Elections fraud case comes up for report today
Top row, from left: Volda Lawrence, Keith Lowenfield, Denise Babb-Cummings, and Michelle Miller. Bottom row, from left: Enrique Livan, Sheffern February, Clairmont Mingo, and Carol Smith-Joseph
Top row, from left: Volda Lawrence, Keith Lowenfield, Denise Babb-Cummings, and Michelle Miller. Bottom row, from left: Enrique Livan, Sheffern February, Clairmont Mingo, and Carol Smith-Joseph

TODAY, Senior Magistrate Leron Daly is set to schedule a date for a case management conference (CMC) regarding the high-profile elections fraud case, following which a trial date will be fixed.

This case has remained stagnant for years due to its intricate nature and the extensive amount of evidence involved.

The case involves former District Four (Demerara-Mahaica) Returning Officer, Clairmont Mingo; former People’s National Congress/Reform (PNC/R) Chairperson, Volda Lawrence; PNC/R activist Carol Smith-Joseph and four others.

The trio, along with Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) employees Sheffern February, Enrique Livan, Denise Bobb-Cummings and Michelle Miller, are before the court for allegedly defrauding the electors of Guyana by declaring a false account of votes for the 2020 General and Regional Elections.

At the last court hearing in December, the state handed over, again, flash drives containing certified copies of Statements of Polls (SoPs) and Statements of Recount (SoRs) along with video interviews. Several bundles of documents were also submitted.

Special Prosecutor Darshan Ramdhani, KC, is currently awaiting advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Shalimar Ali-Hack, who had written to the Chancellor of the Judiciary (ag) Yonette Cummings regarding the possibility of appointing a special magistrate or court to adjudicate the case.

In August 2021, Mingo, along with Chief Elections Officer Keith Lowenfield, and his deputy, Roxanne Myers, had their employment terminated by GECOM.

It is alleged that the defendants inflated or facilitated the inflation of results for Region Four, the country’s largest voting district, to give the APNU+AFC coalition a majority win at the polls when, in fact, the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) had won by 15,000 votes.

Those who rejected the results filed several legal challenges which ended up before the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ), Guyana’s highest appeal court.

A lengthy recount of the votes eventually declared victory in favour of the PPP/C, and Dr. Irfaan Ali was sworn in as the President of Guyana on August 2, 2020.

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