(CMC) – The Secretary General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Irwin LaRocque, has said the ongoing legal and political situation in Guyana shows that the “democratic process is at work”.
Last month, then government back bencher, Charrandass Persaud, voted with the main opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) in a successful motion of no confidence against the David Granger-led coalition A Partnership for National Unity (APNU).
The PPP has since called for fresh regional and general elections by March in keeping with the provisions of the Guyana Constitution. But the government has gone to court challenging the validity of the vote in the 65-member National Assembly. On Tuesday, Chief Justice Roxane George-Wiltshire said she intends to give a ruling by the end of this month, regarding the three matters challenging the validity of the December 21, 2018 motion of no confidence that led to the downfall of the coalition government.
LaRocque, who was asked by reporters about CARICOM’s position on the unfolding situation, said “we have to allow the democratic process to work”.
“We have been observing, we have been looking on and watching on, but the democratic process is at work.”
He said that with the matter now before the courts, the process should be allowed to run its course.
“The matter is before the courts and I think we should allow the discussion and litigation to go through and see what the outcome is. I am sure the court in its wisdom and all of the other peers that may be possible will rule appropriately. My concern is that it be done swiftly, that the matter is before the court and let the court act swiftly,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) said it is alarmed by recent media reports that it was preparing for elections in June.
“The Guyana Defence Force wishes to advise the public that we have not authorised any such release or made any such pronouncements. The Guyana Defence Force is aware that we are not the authority for specifying the date and or time by which elections should be held.
“Any Force will always have intelligent anticipation of tasks likely to be undertaken. These tasks once identified are issued to the subordinates as “Warning Orders” alerting them to the nature of the probable tasks and should not be misconstrued to mean anything else.”
The GDF said that it has “always respected the rule of law and due process, and will continue to maintain a professional Force which contributes to the development of the nation”.