Christian leaders join calls for President to respect Constitution
– urges GECOM staff to conduct duties with integrity, professionalism
– as pressure continues to mount on President to call elections
Christian leaders from the Zadok Ministers Fellowship (ZMF), a network of Christian churches and ministers across Guyana, have become the latest to add its voice to a number of organisations calling on President David Granger to comply with the Constitution.
President Granger had publicly said that once he is advised by the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), he would speedily fix an election date. He was so advised on Thursday last. However, he has not set a date.
According to a statement on Sunday from Apostle Terry Thomas of the Zadok Ministers Fellowship, the group was deeply concerned over the fact that Guyana is facing a political and constitutional crisis.
“As a Christian organisation, we believe that we do have a responsibility to play a role in [preaching to] the nation. We do offer a clarion call and give prophetic guidance to bring us out of these unchartered waters. We do, therefore… call on the President to comply with the Constitution and name a date expeditiously for the holding of General and Regional Elections.”
“We [also] call on GECOM Secretariat and all of its staff nationwide to act with the highest standards of integrity and professionalism. We are mindful that some of the staff are members of our various congregations and we expect that the biblical teachings of fairness, justice and righteousness be evident in their performance.”
The organisation also urged that all political actors, some of whom are part of its congregations, continue to exercise restraint. It also expressed hope that no support from the international community to GECOM would be spared.
“We do express thanks to the international community and our developmental partners for support given in the past and we do request that no resource be spared in lending support to Guyana and GECOM in particular so that it can fulfil its mandate in delivering free and fair elections as is constitutionally mandated.”
“We do council the Christian community scattered across the nation that we act responsibly, speak wisely, participate conscientiously to be the voice of reason in ensuring that we have an environment that is free from fear. It is anticipated that we submit ourselves to the commands of the scripture that our prayers be guided by Matthew 6:10 “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done”.
It was only days ago that members of the diplomatic corps, such as representatives of the United States, the United Kingdom and the European Union, called for the President to immediately name an election date, while noting that the President was in breach of the Constitution.
Strong criticism for the President’s inaction has also come from the Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Guyana (FITUG). And it was only on Friday that the Bar Council of the Bar Association of Guyana condemned the coalition Government for its failure to hold General and Regional Elections within the period mandated by the Constitution, which it reminded is supreme law.
This came after protests against the President and pressure from the diplomatic community to ensure the Government acts in accordance with the Constitution. The People’s Progressive Party (PPP) has already warned that they will continue to agitate for constitutional compliance until the President names an election date.
The Central Islamic Organisation of Guyana (CIOG) has also urged political players to be responsible and exercise restraint. According to CIOG President Shahabudeen Ahmad in a statement over the weekend, the organisation’s main concern is ensuring stability and lasting peace that transcends polling day.
The Zadok Ministers Fellowship represents more than 100 local churches and ministries across Guyana. It was launched last year, with the aim of bringing churches together in unity.