The Commissioners of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) on Monday voted 3-2 in favour of reopening the Claims and Objections period to allow several thousand persons with source documents to be registered in order to vote later this year.
“The proposed date for the reopening of the exercise is July 25th 2011 for a duration of 13 days with the Claims aspect running for 10 days,” GECOM Chairman Dr. Surujbally announced at news briefing Monday afternoon.
The exercise will be conducted countrywide with the re-establisment of temporary offices; rehiring of temporary staff; the deployment of mobile registration units to far-flung areas; the accreditation of scrutineers and; a media campaign to alert the public that it has been reopened.
A figure of 2,237 people was quoted as the number of persons who were not in possession of source documents, namely birth certificates, at the end of the initial period on June 9. Dr. Surujbally said the figure is likely to be more than that.
The chairman said they were informed by Chief Election Officer Gocool Boodoo that the exercise could be reopened without affecting the holding of election by its constitutionally due date of December 28, 2011.
“At the level of the Commission, the deliberations continued at the 331st Statutory Meeting, with the Chief Election Officer pointing out that adequate funds were available for the conduct of a new round of the Claims and Objections exercise and that the Secretariat had determined that such an exercise could be conducted without pushing the elections beyond the constitutional deadline,” the chairman said.