Statement by the Bar Council of the Bar Association of Guyana on the Appointment of the Chairman of the Elections Commission

8th June 2017

The Bar Council of The Guyana Bar Association notes with concern that there has not yet been agreement on the appointment of the Chairman of the Elections Commission. It is of paramount importance that this constitutional office be urgently filled since the position has been vacant since November, 2016.

It is the considered view of The Bar Council that the power created by Article 161(2) of the Constitution to decide on the selection or non-selection of a person for appointment is a public law power subject to the standards applicable to judicial review of such power.

As such, the decision made must be objectively reasonable in the sense that it must not be a decision that no reasonable person asked to make that decision would reach.

Although the issue of the interpretation of Article 161(2) is before the Chief Justice for her consideration, The Bar Council notes that the President has invited the Leader of the Opposition to a meeting on the issue and it hopes that this will lead to a speedy resolution of this matter of urgent national importance.