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PPP/C seeks to have chief elections officer dismissed


PPP/C seeks to have chief elections officer dismissed
Guyana chief elections officer, Keith Lowenfield (FP)

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GEORGETOWN – The governing People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) is seeking to have the chief elections officer Keith Lowenfield, his deputy Roxanne Myers and the returning officer for Region 4, Clairmont Mingo dismissed from their positions.

The PPP/C, through its commissioners on the Guyana Elections Commissioners (GECOM), filed three motions demanding the “immediate dismissal” of the three officials based on the controversial regional and general elections on March 2 last year that resulted in the removal of the coalition, A Partnership for National Unity and the Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC) administration.

No date has yet been set for the debate on the motion. Both the government and the opposition have three GECOM members each on the seven-member commission that is chaired by retired Justice Claudette Singh.

All three electoral officials are before the courts on charges arising out of the elections.

In the motion seeking to remove Lowenfield from office, the commissioners for the governing party argue that he “is currently facing criminal charges being prosecuted by the Guyana Police Force in respect of his numerous infractions of the law and regardless of the outcome of those charges”.

As a result, “…the Commission must take all necessary steps and action…to restore and ensure impartiality, credibility, transparency, public confidence and public trust in its institution and its constitutional and statutory mandate”.

The three government commissioners in their motion also referred to the various court and other challenges to the declaration of the results of the elections and that Lowenfield in breach of his functions, duties, responsibilities and obligations “failed and/or refused and/or neglected to ensure due adherence and compliance of the statutory process…by the Returning Officer for Election District Number 4, Clairmont Mingo…during the process of adding up the votes recorded in the Statements of Poll for the said District”.

The governing party commissioners filed almost identical reasons in respect of the other two election officials they are seeking to have removed.