With the imminent retirement of Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), Dr Steve Surujbally, Government said it would soon begin consideration of a new Chairman.Dr Steve SurujballyMinister of State, Joseph Harmon said President David Granger has already received notices from the parliamentary Opposition that it was ready to commence the consideration and selection of a new Chairman of the election body. Once there was no objection to the names, the Head of State would move ahead with the selection process.Dr Surujbally earlier this month had indicated his intention to demit office before the end of the year.He is currently on vacation and is expected to demit office on November 30.The GECOM Chair already wrote to the Government about his desire to resign and had recommended a raft of measures of reform.He had told the media that he has been expressing his desire to demit office since 2006.He has been at the helm of GECOM since 2001.The People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) had called for the resignation of Surujbally in wake of its strong belief that he supervised a rigged electoral process last year.PPP General Secretary Clement Rohee had expressed concerns recently that since Dr Surujbally had proceeded on leave, meetings of GECOM have not been held to deal with substantive issues save for one meeting to address administrative matters relating to the ongoing continuous registration.“Letters have been written by members of GECOM to Dr Surujbally requesting the convening of GECOM meetings to discuss matters of strategic importance to the work of the Commission,” he stated.When asked, Rohee said he was not in a position to disclose if the Party has deliberated on its nominees for the position of GECOM Chairman.Nonetheless, PPP/C-nominated GECOM Commissioners have already indicated their readiness to submit nominees for a new Chairman to President Granger. Observer missions of the Commonwealth, the Carter Centre and Organisation of American States have long urged that a new mechanism be developed to select and appoint the Commission from a list of non-political persons.GECOM is the entity that is responsible for the administration and conduct of elections in Guyana.
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