The Special Prosecutor (SP) tasked with handling the electoral fraud cases from the March 2020 General and Regional Elections is slated to deliver a comprehensive update to the nation soon. The disclosure was made by Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Anil Nandlall during his recent “Issues in the News” programme.
Nandlall said that the nation is owed an update given that three years have elapsed since three former elections officials and at least two opposition functionaries were charged with wrongdoing during that five-month-prolonged electoral process. He acknowledged the pressing need for clarity, noting that a total of 28 charges have been lodged and presently await resolution within the Magistrates’ Court in Georgetown. The legal proceedings have been under the purview of a specially appointed prosecutor, designated by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
Expressing frustration over the sluggish advancement of these cases, Nandlall empathized with the public’s desire for timely resolution. The Special Prosecutor, who is currently abroad, is slated to furnish an in-depth update upon his return to Guyana. In a bid to foster transparency and address public concerns, arrangements will be made for the prosecutor to engage in a televised discussion with a journalist, Nandlall said. He added that the SP is also set to submit a comprehensive report to the DPP.
Crucially, Nandlall emphasized that the government does not exercise control over the proceedings of the judicial system. Despite his role as the Attorney General and Minister responsible for Legal Affairs and Justice, he emphasized the inability to exert influence over the judicial process at any tier. However, he reaffirmed that avenues for redress remain available to aggrieved citizens seeking resolution.
Embattled former Chief Elections Officer (CEO), Keith Lowenfield, ex-Deputy Chief Elections Officer (DCEO), Roxanne Myers, and former Region Four Returning Officer, Clairmont Mingo, were charged on June 29, 2021, with conspiracy to declare false counts.
They were not required to plead to the charges which allege that between March 2, 2020, and August 2, 2020, in Georgetown, they conspired with each other, together with former APNU+AFC Coalition Minister and current Chair of the People’s National Congress, Volda Lawrence; Coalition activist, Carol Smith-Joseph; Sherfern February, Enrique Livan, Denise Bobb-Cummings, Michelle Miller and others, to defraud the electors of Guyana by declaring a false account of votes for March 2, 2020, General and Regional Elections.
Lowenfield is facing three counts of misconduct in public office, three counts of forgery, and two conspiracy charges, while Myers is facing two counts of misconduct in public office and two conspiracy charges. Mingo is facing four charges alleging that he misconducted himself in public office by failing to disclose the number of votes that were counted during the elections. Apart from those charges, Mingo was charged jointly with Lawrence for forgery and he also faced another joint forgery charge with Smith-Joseph.