The Permanent Council of the Organisation of American States (OAS) on June 13 congratulated the people and government of Grenada for the civic commitment shown in the general elections of February 19, after receiving the report of the Electoral Observation Mission (EOM) of the hemispheric institution that was present during the elections in the Caribbean country.
The Chief of the EOM of the OAS in Grenada, Ambassador Joshua Sears, highlighted the high turnout (87.6 percent) in the general election, and said that “this is a clear indication that electoral democracy has developed firm roots in Grenada.”
”In particular, the Mission would like to highlight the peaceful and orderly manner in which electors conducted themselves, exhibiting a great level of commitment towards democratic values,” added the Chief of the EOM in Grenada.
“The Mission also commends the work of the Parliamentary Elections Office, the Grenadian Police and all public servants mainly responsible for organising and administering the election, political parties, the media and members of civil society for contributing to the development of a smooth, orderly and peaceful electoral process,” said Ambassador Sears, upon reading the conclusions of the Report.
In its Report, the Mission recommended to the government of Grenada a comprehensive review of the electoral legal framework; the enactment of campaign finance regulations; the promotion of women’s participation in the electoral process; and strengthening the work of the Parliamentary Elections Office.
The delegation of the hemispheric institution consisted of 18 international observers from 13 countries, who visited one hundred percent of the 237 voting centers in the country’s 15 constituencies.
The Mission arrived in Grenada on February 11 and concluded its activities on February 21, said Ambassador Sears, who stressed the peaceful atmosphere and the absence of violence in the days before the election, which were won with 58.75 percent of the votes by Keith Mitchell, who assumed office as Prime Minister on February 20.
The Alternate Representative of Grenada, Patricia D.M. Clarke, welcomed the report of the EOM and recalled that the organisation has carried out four electoral observation missions since the Caribbean country became independent in 1974.
“This is certainly something that signals the absolute importance of the OAS as a partner in strengthening the democratic processes in all of our countries across the Americas,” said the representative of Grenada.
The Secretary General of the OAS, José Miguel Insulza, expressed his gratitude to Ambassador Sears and praised his work at the head of the EOM in Grenada.
The head of the hemispheric organisation noted that the work of Ambassador Sears was enriched by his past as the Permanent Representative of The Bahamas to the organisation.