The United Kingdom (UK) is yet to decide on what consequences to impose on Guyana if the results of the March 02, 2020 General and Regional elections are not free, fair and credible, British High Commissioner to Guyana, Greg Quinn said Monday.
During an interview on ‘Context’, a programme produced by NCN, Quinn was specifically asked what is the UK’s position on the issue of consequences should the election results lack credibility.
The Diplomat, in response, reminded of a statement made in March by UK Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab in which he cautioned that Guyana could face serious consequences if a government is sworn in on the basis of non-credible results.
Quinn said, “If you go back to what the Foreign Secretary said in his statement in March; he has been very clear that there has to be credible results. And to be honest…everybody in this country wants to have credible and transparent elections. And the fact of the matter is, if there is not a credible and transparent election then there will be consequences.”
He, however, disclosed that the nature of those consequences are still to be decided. The United States of America has already indicated that consequences for an election result lacking credibility can range from visa revocation to financial restrictions.
The British High Commissioner nevertheless posited that the most important thing is for Guyana to get credible results. And in that regard, he said the UK has welcomed the national recount of all ballots happening at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC).
Quinn has since commended the recount process, saying among other things, it is going “smoothly and happily.”
According to him, the UK has already made clear its views on the events which transpired after the close of polls on March 2, 2020.
“That is in the past and we now have an opportunity to push forward to credible election results which can allow us to focus on what happens next,” Quinn added.
He continued, “We are facing this global pandemic and we need to have a credible government in place to fight that pandemic and then there is other stuff like…what the future of governance might look like and what we need to do in terms of constitutional reform.”
On March 24, 2020, via a press statement, Raab assured that the UK, along with its partners, are ready to assist in ensuring a credible process that provides the democratic outcome that the Guyanese people deserve.
As a matter of fact, he said that the transition of government in Guyana should only take place in line with transparent and democratic principles that lead to credible results.
Further to this, the Foreign Secretary warned that any government sworn in on the basis of non-credible results will face strong international condemnation, including a range of serious consequences for those concerned.
The Commonwealth has welcomed the recount process in Guyana.
Baroness Patricia Scotland, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, has already made it clear that full transparency and adherence to the rule of law is vital to the credibility of the electoral process.
“The Commonwealth continues to support the [recount] process through its Senior Electoral Adviser to GECOM,” Baroness Scotland tweeted last week Wednesday, May 06, 2020 which marked the beginning of the ballots recount exercise.