People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Executive Anil Nandlall, who was a former Attorney General, has poured cold water on claims that caretaker President David Granger and his coalition party have done nothing wrong, detailing to the Organisation of American States (OAS) the President’s undermining strategy.
During his submission before the OAS Permanent Council meeting called to discuss Guyana’s electoral process, Nandlall said that Granger’s strategy has always been to hide behind his party’s “minions” and spout platitudes while they undermine democracy in Guyana.
One such case was the National Recount, agreed upon by Granger, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo and then Caribbean Community (Caricom) Chair, Mia Mottley. Despite committing to abide by the recount, Granger has done anything but.
“They went to the court to stop the recount from taking place. That case went to the high court, they lost. They went to the Court of Appeal. And the court ruled that GECOM has the power to do that recount. The Court of Appeal endorsed the recount.”
“Mr Granger went into that agreement and immediately afterwards, while he is hiding in the background and committing himself to the world and to Caricom to do this recount, he is using his minions to dismantle that very agreement he entered into,” Nandlall told the OAS Permanent Council.
According to Nandlall, while the APNU/AFC coalition continues to undermine democracy, Granger continues to make empty and platitudinal statements about his respect for democracy and the rule of law. But Nandlall said that when the recount began to show the world that the PPP won the elections, Granger had to find a way out.
“They participated in the recount. President Granger, again, like he usually does, expressed his platitudes and made sanctimonious declarations to be bound by the recount. When they realised that they were losing the recount, they started to fabricate these allegations of dead and migrant people voting,” Nandlall told the Council.
Nandlall pointed to the many times that the three Government-nominated Guyana Election Commission (GECOM) Commissioners have delayed the election process and obstructed GECOM from doing its work.
He also pointed to the actions of a cabal in the GECOM Secretariat, as well as the APNU/AFC supporters who have continuously run to the courts to prevent GECOM from declaring the recount results.
It reached the point where acting Chief Justice Roxane George, after throwing out another APNU/AFC supporter’s case on Monday, had to urge lawyers from the APNU/AFC side to stop wasting the courts’ time on issues that are res judicata; that is, already adjudicated by the court.
Meanwhile, Prime Ministerial Candidate of the PPP/C, Mark Phillips told the OAS Permanent Council that the results emanating from the recount process are already known and accepted by the entire world.
During the virtual hearing, Phillips, a former Chief of Staff of the Guyana Defence Force, outlined the efforts being taken by the PPP/C and other stakeholders to get the incumbent APNU/AFC to respect the will of the people.
According to Phillips, the PPP/C has convincingly won the elections and the APNU/AFC must immediately take steps to concede defeat and allow for a smooth transition of Government accordingly.
“The results of the recount will not change; the declaration is just a matter of formality. It is about time the APNU/AFC respect the urging of the international community and allow the PPP/C to transition peacefully to the next Government of Guyana,” Phillips told the Permanent Council.
“We have a situation where APNU/AFC is seeking to use fraudulent declarations in order to get them to be accepted as the winners of the elections. A declaration that was condemned by the international community,” he added.
It is now approaching five months since Guyanese went to the polls and voted. A National Recount had shown that the opposition People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) won the elections with 233,336 votes while the APNU/AFC coalition garnered 217,920.
However, there have been repeated attempts by persons aligned to APNU/AFC to use declarations that contain the fraudulent declarations of Region Four Returning Officer Clairmont Mingo, to declare the election results. This would gift APNU/AFC a win they did not earn.
Last week, the United States announced that they are slapping officials in Guyana who are undermining democracy, with visa restrictions.
The decision was announced by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, during a press conference. According to Pompeo, these visa restrictions can also be applied to the immediate family members of those persons.
US Ambassador to Guyana Sarah-Ann Lynch has said that for privacy reasons, the names will not be disclosed. However, this publication has received reports that the list includes a prominent financier of the APNU/AFC Government, as well as several APNU/AFC Ministers, election officials and even judicial officers.