Thousands of soldiers, police, prison guards and fire rescue personnel will cast ballots this weekend ahead of Guyana’s May 11 general elections. Some 7,540 people will be eligible for Saturday’s early voting at 84 polling stations across the country, elections chief Keith Lowenfield said in a statement. Political parties have been campaigning hard to win votes among the security forces and emergency services, though they represent a small percentage of Guyana’s electorate.
Their role was brought into the spotlight when President Donald Ramotar’s ruling People’s Progressive Party expressed grave concern over alleged “militarization” of the opposition coalition.
The PPP suggested the many former officers supporting the opposition would seek to use their connections with active-duty personnel to create havoc if the elections did not go their way.