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Guyana National and Regional Elections 2011: Final Report

22 December 2011
Statement by: Commonwealth Observer Group
Many benchmarks for democratic elections were met, though shortcomings remain to be addressed

Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma on 22 December 2011 released the Final Report of the Commonwealth Observer Group which observed the 28 November National and Regional Elections in Guyana.

In issuing the report, he said: "The Commonwealth Observer Group found that overall, the elections were credible and many of the benchmarks for democratic elections were met. The Group noted that, despite some shortcomings with regard to aspects of the campaign and tabulation of the results, the elections represented further progress for the country in strengthening its democratic and electoral processes to ensure a more level playing field between contestants in the campaign. The Group commended the preparedness of the Guyana Elections Commission, notably in terms of the significant improvement in the integrity of the voters’ register. The Commonwealth stands ready to assist Guyana in further upgrading its democratic procedures and machinery.”

Note to Editors:

The Report was completed and signed by all members of the Commonwealth Observer Group prior to their departure from Guyana. It was presented to the Commonwealth Secretary-General by the Chair of the Group, the Hon Denis Marshall QSO, a former Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and former New Zealand Cabinet Minister. The Report has subsequently been distributed to the Government of Guyana, political parties, the Elections Commission and all other Commonwealth governments.