By Suraj Narine
When trouble erupted over the tabulation of the Region Four votes via a less than transparent process, almost all international observers joined their voices in protest of what took place and called for respect and use of the credible procedures. US Ambassador to Guyana, Sarah-Ann Lynch was one of the many international observers who shared in these concerns while calling for a return to the democratic process.
But her sentiments and that of other Ambassadors from Britain, Canada and the European Union (EU), were quickly condemned by APNU+AFC government agents as they deemed it to be meddling in the country’s political affairs.
During an interview earlier today on Kaieteur Radio, the envoy was asked to respond to the said criticisms.
The US Ambassador said, “I think I can speak for myself and say if I had stayed silent this year and not spoken up, I think that would have been the wrong thing to do. I think it is our job to observe and speak up when we see things that may not be going as well as we had hoped and we will continue to do that …We will also do things respectfully.”
The envoy recalled that her statements regarding a return to the democratic process were also echoed by many other international observer missions such as CARICOM, the Organization of American States (OAS), Commonwealth, EU, and the Carter Centre. She reminded too that statements were also made by bilateral partners such as France, India, and Norway. “…So I think we were in good company because we all had similar observations,” the Ambassador added.
Further to this, Lynch was asked to state if she is at all sympathetic to the People’s Progressive Party (PPP). The Ambassador categorically denied this while noting that she takes an inclusive approach to meeting with stakeholders be it from the business community to the political faction. “.. I have tried to meet with many during my year-plus stay here. And people don’t hold back, people tell me what they think but I have been doing what I can to hear the breadth and depth of opinions in Guyana,” the US official concluded.