– PPP commissioners say in joint statementWhile acknowledging that any illness of the Guyana Elections Chairman (GECOM), retired Justice James Patterson is regrettable, Commissioners representing the Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) claim it is a ploy designed to delay the holding of elections.In a joint statement, the Commissioners – Bibi Shadick, Sase Gunraj and Robeson Benn – therefore urged that GECOM be alert to its duty and responsibilities as mandated by the Constitution and that no action be undertaken to subvert these intentionally.“…we do wish him a speedy and a full recovery, we cannot be unmindful of a possible situation existing where the said extension of illness is a ploy designed to delay the holding of General and Regional Elections within the constitutionally determined 90-day timeframe consequent on the previously referenced Resolution of the National Assembly,” the Commissioners stated.The Commissioners further stated that the holding of meetings of the Sub-Committees of GECOM should resume discussing, determining and guiding GECOM’s actions and schedules necessary for the holding of elections in the constitutionally mandated 90-day timeframe.This activity, according to them, will demonstrate that the GECOM is alert to its duty and responsibilities to be the nation as mandated by the Constitution. The commissioners have also called on civil society and the international community to take note and be vigilant with respect to the unfolding situation at GECOM, especially as it relates to a possible delay.On Tuesday, Patterson, circulated an agenda for the Wednesday, January 8, statutory meeting of GECOM slated for 13:00h. The Opposition Commissioners said they responded to the proposed agenda sent by the Chairman, requesting the inclusion of ‘GECOM Preparations for Elections’ as a priority issue for consideration at the said meeting.“The natural and obvious inclusion of this agenda item was expected as a consequence of the resolution on the no-confidence motion of December 21, 2018 in the National Assembly,” they added. However, less than three hours before the meeting the announcement was made that the Chairman was unwell and that his medical leave had been extended.“A later GECOM Media Advisory stated inter alia; “…his medical leave has been extended following a visit to his doctor on January 7, 2019”. It is passing strange that this information was not passed on to all Commissioners on January 7, 2019,” the Commissioners observed.Patterson has not been at work since November 30, 2018, and there is no clear indication as to when he could return, as a timeframe for the extended sick leave has not been provided. The last meeting of Commissioners was held on November 27, 2018.Following his appointment as GECOM chair, Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo has noted with concern that Patterson might not be best suited for the post given his seniority. But President David Granger had argued that Patterson who was at the time of his appointment in 2017, 84-year-old, is ‘fit and proper’ for the post, in accordance with the Constitution of Guyana.In October 2018, the PPP filed leave to appeal the October 19, 2018 decision of acting Chancellor Madam Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards and fellow Appellate Court Justices Dawn Gregory and Justice Rishi Persaud that effectively declared Patterson’s appointment constitutional. The matter is now before the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ).
1 GoalkeeperSimon Mignolet followed up his impressive display at Chelsea with a clean sheet against West Ham and will continue in goal.DefenceWith a big game at Everton on Saturday, Rodgers could opt to rest Emre Can and that could see Dejan Lovren restored to the starting XI.The Croatian has struggled to find the form that convinced Liverpool to part with £20m for the defender but he will be keen to prove his worth.MidfieldLiverpool have looked fluid in their new 3-4-3 system, and that could see Alberto Moreno and Lazar Markovic preserved ahead of the derby, which would give Glen Johnson and Jose Enrique some much needed game time.Steven Gerrard will be keen to see Liverpool progress as he aims to lift the FA Cup on his 35th birthday, but with his final Merseyside derby to come, Rodgers may opt to start the Englishman from the bench.AttackRodgers said Sturridge’s reaction to playing on the weekend was positive but he will continue to manage his return.That will likely see the former Chelsea man start from the bench which gives an opportunity for either Fabio Borini, Rickie Lambert or Mario Balotelli to lead the line.Liverpool fans, how do you think you’ll line-up against Bolton? Comment below… Brendan Rodgers takes his Liverpool side to Bolton this evening in a bid to avoid a major FA Cup upset in their fourth round replay.The Northern Irishman has overseen a change in fortunes for the Reds after a disappointing start to the season, and Liverpool has lost just twice in 17 games in all competitions.Daniel Sturridge marked his return to first-team action on the weekend after five months out with a goal, while captain Steven Gerrard is fully fit after being rested on the weekend.With a Merseyside derby to come on the weekend, will Rodgers rest some of his stars and will Sturridge be in the starting XI?Possible Liverpool line-up against Bolton: 1 Brendan Rodgers takes his Liverpool side to Bolton this evening in a bid to avoid a major FA Cup upset in their fourth round replay.