'Wait for official election results'

'Wait for official election results'

GECOM sends warning ahead of Guyana’s May 11 poll

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

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GEORGETOWN, Guyana (CMC) — The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) has warned the public against accepting results of the May 11 general elections from any other source than itself, noting that "any other claims to results would be spurious and unofficial".

The GECOM, in a statement, called on individuals and groups purporting to conduct exit polls and announcing their 'findings' to desist from the potentially dangerous and reckless practice, since their uttering may serve to stir unrest and create further uneasiness in an environment which is already tense.

"Moreover, extant electoral laws and guidelines mandate only GECOM as the sole legal authority to announce official election results in Guyana. In addition, it must be recognised that while there may be no specific laws making exit polling an offence, there are laws relating to the molestation of voters entering and exiting polling stations.

"The secrecy of the ballot must remain sacrosanct. In any case, the reliability of results emanating from an exit poll is dubious, unreliable and very possibly inaccurate," GECOM added.

At the same time, GECOM said it would be conducting free, fair and transparent elections on May 11, 2015, and would like to appeal to all stakeholders to peacefully accept the final official results of the 2015 general and regional elections.

At least eight political parties are vying for control of the 65-seat National Assembly with political observers saying the election is a straight fight between the ruling People's Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) and the Opposition coalition alliance that comprises the grouping, A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) and the Alliance for Change (AFC).

The GECOM said it has been working "unremittingly to ensure it delivers elections that are free, fair, credible and transparent. "Every area of elections management is being competently and professionally managed by committed men and women, led by an experienced group of commissioners.

"Therefore, all political parties and their supporters must be cognisant and supportive of GECOM's efforts to submit results that are accurate, and not contribute to any act that will stymie and undermine this process," GECOM said.

It added that the integrity of the electoral process must be measured by the "professional, efficient, effective, and transparent electoral management best practices being exercised by the GECOM".

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