No elections announcement in New Year’s address – President Ramotar

President Donald RamotarGeorgetown: President Donald Ramotar has disclosed that the possible date for the hosting of General and Regional Elections will not be addressed in his New Year’s Day message to the nation.

President Ramotar said that it is an established custom for the President to address the nation on the dawn of a new year, but there was nothing extra “special” in his upcoming address.

He explained that there will be “no announcement for elections in my New Year’s message”. Earlier this month, the President had announced that Guyana will soon go to polls.

“I have considered and I have consulted and this is my resolve. We will go to elections. I have also since written to the international community alerting them to the possibility of early elections and the desire for them to field observer missions,” he said.

When pressed for clarity on a timeline within which a date will be set for a return to the polls, the President had said that he will make the proclamation before the Mashramani celebrations, possibly in his New Year’s Message to the nation.

Once a date is set, political parties kick into campaign mode. Also once a proclamation, announcing a date, is made by the President to go to General and Regional Elections, constitutionally, the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) has three months within which to deliver.

Ramotar added that between now and the announcement of a date; he will be engaging GECOM, as well as any other stakeholder groups in talks. “I have an open door policy,” he said.

President’s decision to call General and Regional Elections in 2015 is receiving the support of civil society, with the exception of a few.