If it takes an extra hour or even a day to ensure the electoral process is transparent, then so be it, says Executive Member of the Alliance For Change (AFC), Dominic Gaskin.
For this politician, no effort must be spared to assure Guyanese that what took place with the counting of the votes and subsequent tabulation was fair and acceptable in the eyes of everyone entitled to witness it.
In this vein, Gaskin said he was pleased to note that a high level CARICOM team will be in Guyana shortly to oversee the recounting of the votes for all electoral districts.
CARICOM’s Chairman and Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley said yesterday that the request for a team to oversee the recount was made by President David Granger and agreed to by Opposition Leader, Bharrat Jagdeo.
Upon noting this, Gaskin told Kaieteur News that this brings some level of relief for Guyana as the previous situation of impasse on the integrity of the declared results for Region Four was doing more harm than good.
Gaskin said, “I was relieved to see that the leaders have agreed to this CARICOM-led team coming to oversee the recount. It is a relief for Guyana and I think it shows a level of concern for what took place. It is a sign of maturity and genuine desire to bring about a resolution to this situation.”
The AFC Executive Member also stated that the agreement between the two, Granger and Jagdeo, is a positive sign and it gives him a great deal of hope. “I want to commend both of them on agreeing to this extension or addition to the process as well as the effort to restore confidence. This is important,” Gaskin added.
Further to this, Gaskin said that he is happy that it is CARICOM leading the intervention and not a team from far away.
In this regard he said, “This is our problem to resolve and no one from outside who doesn’t understand our culture and our people and ethnic relations, could really adjudicate responsibly at this time.
“We agreed to have observers present and they have their methods and modus operandi and I respect that. (But) we have a country to live in and they have to respect that…”
While he refrained from casting aspersions on preliminary comments he has seen from some quarters, Gaskin sought to note that statements about international sanctions on Guyana and those which state Guyana must not do anything that would place it in isolation, are not helpful.
Gaskin said, “I think people should understand that Guyanese on the whole are the victims of, I think, a cycle, a political cycle with ethnic undertones that is not healthy and that is not of their own making…”
The former Business Minister also called for Guyanese to remain calm during this time.
He said, “We just have to guard against getting overly emotional and allowing ourselves to be misled by information that appeals our own prejudices which all of us as human beings have.”
At the end of the day, the AFC Member stressed, “This is our problem to resolve.”