Persaud’s appointment – “new and terminal heights in the travesty” – Alexander

Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon along with opposition nominated GECOM commissioners are accusing GECOM Chairman Justice Claudette Singh of bias over the appointment of Vishnu Persaud as Chief Elections Officer. Persaud was one of two persons who was shortlisted for the post. They are also contending the process by which Persaud was appointed, is flawed.

On Friday, Justice Singh sided with the government nominated commissioners on the appointment of Persaud.

“The Chairman of GECOM yet again shifted the goal post and changed the rules of the game to suit the People’s Progressive Party,” Harmon said on Friday.

Opposition nominated Commissioner Vincent Alexander at a press conference told the media that the process was flawed as he said the commissioners witnessed “new and terminal heights in the travesty”.

“The Chairperson, who presided over the meeting in which Commissioners made their pleadings, read a predetermined ruling. In other words, even as the pleadings were being presented, the Chair had already scripted her decision,” Alexander said on Friday.

GECOM in a statement said that Persaud was the “more superior” candidate edging out Jamaican Leslie Harrow but Alexander contents that Justice Singh reliance on a testimonial supplied by Former Chairman Dr Steve Surujbally “credence to the contention that the entire process was a travesty”.

Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Harmon in his statement said that Justice Singh cannot be trusted as he called bias, “The Chairman of GECOM has shown that she cannot be impartial and is willing to continue to use her position to further place the entire GECOM into a tenuous position,” Harmon said.

Vishnu Persaud had previously worked as the Commission’s Public Relations Officer with stints as Deputy Chief Elections Officer. He is expected to be sworn in soon.