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Monday, December 12, 2022 is Nomination Day for the March 13, 2023 Local Government Elections announced the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).
Applications for symbols, which must include printed and electronic versions (on a flash drive) of the respective symbols, must be submitted in sealed envelopes clearly marked “Application for Symbol Local Government Elections 2023″, no later than 21” November 2022 to the Chairman, Guyana Elections Commission, 41 High and Cowan Street, Kingston, Georgetown. This would be in accordance with Section 48 (1) of the Local Authorities (Elections) Act, Cap 28:03.
As per notice political parties, voluntary groups and individuals in outlying Local Authority Areas (LAAs) may submit their symbol to the Registration Officer at the GECOM Registration Office in their area.
There are 10 townships and approximately 70 Neighbourhood Democratic Councils (NDC) in the Local Government tier.
Guyanese are returning to elections with a Preliminary List of Electors that reflects approximately 90 percent of the country’s population. GECOM said its hands are tied by the law and court’s ruling in making changes to the list.
Guyanese and every observer to the 2020 General and Regional Elections drew attention to the bloated list and recommended action be taken to remedy the situation. None other than the CARICOM team to the Recount Exercise, in their report stated, “as a minimum condition of electoral reform, the Team recommends the urgent need for the total re-registration of all voters in Guyana. It therefore behooves the Commission to create a new voter registry especially given the suspicion that the 2020 register was bloated, a suspicion which is not without merit.”
Whilst in 2015 the then opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) demanded new national registration, through a house-to-house exercise, in 2022 President Ali said the List is not the problem
One commentator told Village Voice the law is not written in stone and given the bloated list GECOM and the political parties should lead the way in making amendment(s) to the law to facilitate the process of ensuring a clean voters list. “The PPP is not serious about credible elections and is using GECOM to sustain the fraud, hiding behind some law with the full support of GECOM’s Chairperson, Justice Claudette Singh, whose vote they can rely on.”