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Chief of Staff briefs GDF Officers and Ranks on their role for Elections

Brigadier General Mark Phillips once again briefed servicemen and women of the Guyana Defence Force as well as the Force's civilian staff on their role, regarding the conduct of their duties and their service to the nation as soldiers and citizens for the upcoming national elections. He emphasised this morning that a thoroughly professional approach is to be demonstrated and maintained at all times.

                                      

He commenced his address by stating that contrary to what has been peddled nationally, the Guyana Defence Force is a professional organisation and remains the stable band in the society. “Service to the nation remains our motto,” he added.

“Ranks you have a civic responsibility as citizens to exercise your franchise during national elections by casting your vote. You are free to vote for whichever person or political party you choose, since it is your Constitutional right. However, do not allow anyone to make that decision for you. Your vote and who you cast it for is your personal and private choice!” he emphasised.

All were reminded that it was unprofessional to exhibit any form of campaigning on any military base. “Guyana is still being governed by President Donald Ramotar who was duly elected to the Presidency. He is still the Commander in Chief of the military, and in that regard, still has the right to give instructions to the military,” he said, “Ex military officers also have the right to participate in the political activities of Guyana. We respect their service to Guyana. However, our current operational decision-making is not influenced by ex military officers. We take orders from the duly elected president of Guyana, our Commander in Chief, President Donald Ramotar,” he added

The Chief of Staff explained that there will be a large number of representatives from several countries and International bodies in Guyana during the elections period, serving as Observers, and repeated his concern that the highest level of professionalism must be

displayed at all times. “You are to avoid any type of confrontational situations regarding political matters, and, if approached by political representatives on matters regarding the GDF, you must refer those persons to me.”

Military personnel and other members of the Joint Services will cast their ballots on Saturday, May 2. Military personnel will be confined from May 6, in preparation for deployment in support of the Guyana Police Force as becomes necessary. It is traditional for the military to vote several days ahead of the general public so that troops can be available for service to the nation as need be, during, and even after the period of National Elections are over.

The military is a professional institution and remains committed to the defence and security of the state of Guyana and upholding the nation's Constitution!