ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada, CMC – Observer teams from the London-based Commonwealth Secretariat and the Organization of American States (OAS) have arrived here to monitor the February 19 general elections.
A statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that a seven member team from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) grouping is expected here on Wednesday.
“The Commonwealth is pleased to lend its support to the people of Grenada as they exercise their democratic franchise in electing their leaders. Credible electoral processes lie at the heart of democracy, a fundamental value to which the Commonwealth attaches great importance,” said Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma.
The three-member Commonwealth team is being led by Irfan Abdool Rahman, electoral commissioner of Mauritius and will remain here until February 24.
The government statement said that the observer teams will meet with the various stakeholders including Governor General Sir Carlyle Glean, Prime Minister Tillman Thomas, Leader of the main opposition New National Party(NNP), Dr Keith Mitchell and the Supervisor of Elections Judy Benoit.
Prime Minister Thomas is leading his National Democratic Congress (NDC) into the election where the main challenge will come from the NNP that lost the 2008 poll by an 11-4 margin.
Electoral officials said 45 candidates have been nominated to contest the poll and that more than 62,000 are eligible to cast ballots.