The attempts by opposition parties to refuse the legally mandated house-to-house voter registration is an affront to democracy, writes Rickford Burke, President of the Caribbean Guyana Institute for Democracy (CGID) in an article in Guyana Chronicle.
Although the law required that such persons be registered by house-to-house registration, Guyana’s opposition PPP has steadfastly objected to such registration to add these young people to the voters’ list.
Today, the three PPP GECOM Commissioners voted against house-to-house registration to register young people who are eligible voters. This PPP voter-suppression tactic is unpatriotic, anti-democratic and repugnant to the law. The PPP’s assault on the nation’s youth derives from polling data that indicates that young people are less likely to vote for the PPP because of its history of racism, as well as corruption and criminality which plagued the PPP regime which lost power in 2015.
We condemn the PPP’s blatant attempt to suppress the youth vote and its use of our youth as a political football. We call on the coalition government and elections commission to ensure that every eligible voter is registered and allowed to exercise his or her franchise freely and fairly and in a secure environment. CGID also calls of every eligible voter, particularly our youth, to ensure that they are registered to vote, and to exercise their franchise whenever elections are called. Our vote is the most powerful force in a democracy.