Visa restrictions intended to send clear message of consequences of subverting democracy – Pompeo

The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, hours after announcing visa restrictions for persons who are undermining democracy in Guyana, said the move is aimed at sending a clear message of the consequences violating the will of the people.

Pompeo, in a tweet, stated: “The United States will not stand by and do nothing as the will of the Guyanese people is violated. Today’s new visa restrictions send a clear message of the consequences of subverting democracy and the rule of law, which poses a danger to us and our hemispheric partners.”

Earlier on Wednesday, the Secretary of State announced the visa restrictions for persons attempting to alter the will of the Guyanese people. He also called for caretaker President David Granger to sept aside and respect the results of the March 02 General and Regional Elections.

“Today I am announcing visa restrictions on individuals responsible for or complicit in the undermining of democracy in Guyana. The immediate family members of such persons may also be subject to restrictions,” Pompeo said.

In a subsequent statement on the State Department’s website, Pompeo said that he has been clear that the United States stands with the Guyanese people and that there would be consequences for individuals who seek to undermine democracy.  He noted that the events following the March 2 elections indicate that there are forces that have repeatedly refused to accept the will of the people at the ballot box.

“Guyana’s non-democratic trajectory is dangerous for its citizens and for the hemisphere as a whole.  I hope that Guyana’s leaders understand what is at stake if they continue down this path. This action is not about interference.  It is to send a clear message of the consequences of subverting democracy and the rule of law, which poses a danger to us and our hemispheric partners.  We have long said that we have no preference for a winning party, as long as it is selected through a free and fair electoral process that is credible,” the statement noted.

The Peoples Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) has won the elections with 233,336 votes, according to the results of the national recount exercise.

But the David Granger-led A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Coalition is refusing to concede defeat despite mounting international pressure.

In fact, the coalition administration has been given multiple warnings that their failure to respect the will of the people will be met with consequences.

The Chief Elections Officer Keith Lowenfield has been refusing to prepare his final elections report based on the recount results. He has been given four opportunities to do so but has refused on each occasion.

In fact, the CEO, in his report on the recount exercise, confirmed that the PPP/C won the elections with 233,336 votes while the APNU/AFC Coalition received 217, 920 votes.

However, he presented another report on June 23, giving the APNU/AFC 171, 825 votes and the PPP/C 166, 343 votes, invalidating over 115,000 votes.

His latest report he submitted included the fraudulent declarations from the Returning Officer for Region Four Clairmont Mingo who had heavily inflated the votes in favour of the APNU/AFC.

Both of those fraudulent reports which were presented by the CEO were embraced by the Granger-led Coalition.