Un-rig these elections

Un-rig these elections

Dear Editor,

In response to the US Secretary of State’s statement on Guyana (SN Mar 18), it is time to “un-rig” the count of the Statements of Poll (SOPs) of Region 4 as carried out by certain staff at Gecom. President Granger, widely respected for his honesty, must insist Mingo and Gecom do the right thing to save Guyana from serious consequences as announced by Secretary of State Pompeo.

The real vote count is required. Regardless of who wins, let the country breathe a sigh of relief. A real count is urgently needed to save Guyana’s ‘face’ and prevent sanctions that will hurt everyone. Pompeo will levy serious consequences on those engaged in as well as the beneficiaries of rigging. Anyone sworn in from a fraudulent count of votes or appointed by such a leader will face sanctions. Pompeo says such a government will be illegitimate. Not only will the riggers be targeted, so will those who are appointed by an illegal government. Once America initiates actions, other nations generally follow. The officers, commissioners, Chair, staff of Gecom, Ministers, heads of agencies, etc., will be in serious trouble if Gecom doesn’t act according to law and count every ballot and SOP.

Usually, when the US issues a warning of serious consequences, visas (not only for the culprits but their families also) will be cancelled. Assets will be confiscated and or frozen and revenues due Guyana kept in escrow. Tourist visas for other Guyanese may also be suspended. Foreign aid will be cut. All pending agreements with Guyana will be suspended. Further-more, as happened in Venezuela, if an illegal government is sworn in, there can be a parallel government recognized by Western powers or a government in exile like the PLO can be formed. Why is Gecom putting the Guyanese nation through this stress? Why not simply do the honourable thing? That injunction to be heard tomorrow will not save Guyana from sanctions. Only Gecom can save Guyana right now. Count the SOPs or recount all the legitimate votes! It is the right thing. It is the honourable thing!

The SOPs count by M. Mingo was not and is never going to be accepted by Guyanese and the world community. His behaviour goes against democratic principles. The international observers, diplomats and their home states have pronounced on Mingo’s false count. The United States will never accept it and the nation will pay for it. The country must brace for sanctions if Gecom does not reverse course.

Gecom officials, I appeal to you to please redeem your reputation by un-rigging the count. Do a proper, correct count of the SOPs and declare the winner.

Yours faithfully,

Dr. Vishnu Bisram

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