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Observers On Their Way Ahead Of Voting

By AVA TURNQUEST

Tribune Chief Reporter

aturnquest@tribunemedia.net

ELECTION observers are on their way to monitor the country’s general election as the advanced poll begins today.

All four international organisations invited by the government have confirmed their attendance to observe the electoral process on May 10, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Invited groups include: the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), the Commonwealth of Nations, the Organisation of American States (OAS) and the United States of America.

For the Commonwealth, former Ghanaian Foreign Minister Hanna Tetteh will serve as chairperson for a four-member team that will be in the country between May 4 and 13. Ms Tetteh will be joined by election supervisor Elvin Bailey of St Kitts and Nevis; gender specialist Lebrechtta Hesse-Bayne of Antigua and Barbuda; and chairman of the National Communications Network, Enrico Woolford of Guyana.

The mission will be a first for the Commonwealth, whose team will be assessing “whether the election has been conducted according to the standards for democratic elections to which the Commonwealth of the Bahamas has committed itself.”

In a press statement, Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland said: “I’m delighted that former foreign minister Hanna Tetteh has accepted my invitation to lead the Commonwealth Observer Group. Her experience will be a real asset in this important assignment. In offering their assessment on the conduct of the election and the overall credibility of the process, the group will be contributing to enhancing democracy in the Bahamas.”

Meanwhile, the OAS’ electoral observation team will be deployed today, according to Secretary General Luis Almagro.

Mr Almagro signed an agreement with interim representative of the Bahamas to the OAS, Chet Neymour, yesterday.

The mission will be the organisation’s second deployment to the country, and will be headed by the ombudsperson of the organisation, Sherry Tross, according to a press statement.

During the ceremony, held at OAS headquarters in Washington, DC, Mr Almagro said: “The OAS is committed to accompanying the Bahamas in this important democratic exercise. We look forward to the successful conclusion of the process and to hearing the authentic voice and will of the people of your great democracy.”

Comments

Required 3 years, 5 months ago

So... they missed today's fun and joy?

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Sickened 3 years, 5 months ago

Immigration didn't let them in until they got the advanced polling station sorted out. LOL!

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licks2 3 years, 5 months ago

That Adv poll will never be "ironed out". . .four hours wait time out in the sun. . .lines at about 2000 strong. . .then about one hour inside the building before you reach the line to wait for your time to go to another long line to wait to go to the table to vote. . .then after you reach the table after five or six hours standing on a line. . .the P.O. tells you. . .sorry, your name is not on the register! Imagine a poll worker. . .who had to submit their name and voters card number so that it can appear on the AP register and find someone did not record it. . .

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sealice 3 years, 5 months ago

YWhy on earth does the PLP need a gender specialist? What is a gender specialist? Did the BBC put them up to this so no cross dressers can vote?

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