Livingston ScottSTAR WriterSt Jago High School climbed to the top of Zone E in the FLOW/ISSA Manning Cup football competition with a 6-0 hammering of Kingston High at Breezy Castle yesterday.Second-half substitute Shaqon Bryan (67th, 86th, 88th) registered a hat-trick for the Spanish Town-based school, while Matthew Fisher (3rd, 12th) and Ryan Smart (44th) were the other scorers.St Jago’s Hayden Street was red-carded in added time, after denying a Kingston High player a clear goalscoring opportunity.The result pushed the Glen Laing-coached team to 16 points, three clear of Wolmer’s Boys’, whose game against Bridgeport at the Dunbeholden playing field was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.St Jago had defeated Kingston High 8-1 in their first-round meeting, and from the opening whistle yesterday dominated and created chances almost at will, but Smart was especially wasteful.Fisher got St Jago off the mark with a sweetly struck free kick from 20 yards after just three minutes. He then added a second nine minutes later when he got free inside the area to score from close range.Smart finally got his name on the scoresheet a minute before the interval, after a series of missed scoring chances. He netted on the second attempt after the goalkeeper had denied his initial effort.powerful strikerLaing introduced Bryan after the break and the striker went to work in a business-like manner. The speedy and powerful striker made it 4-0 moments after coming on, latching on to a sweet through ball from Fisher and firing past the Kingston High keeper.Four minutes from time, he finished off a fine dribble by Smart, who passed for him to score from six yards. He completed his hat-trick two minutes later with a rasping shot from 12 yards.Bryan, who had a hat-trick against Kingston High in the first meeting, said he wanted more, but did not get to start.”The aim was to score more, but the coach decided to bench me today. But coach knows best and his decision always works out at the end,” he said.Meanwhile, Laing thought it was easy pickings for his side, but thought they were far from their best.”We didn’t play as good in the first half as we did in the second half. We are a better team than this, getting six goals is a formality. we should have scored more,” he said.
GECOM chairmanshipWith GECOM to begin preparing next year to hold Local Government Elections in 2019, British High Commissioner Gregory Quinn is calling on local authorities to appoint a Chairman for the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) as soon as possible.Opposition Leader Bharrat JagdeoThe British diplomat told reporters on Thursday that the appointment of a GECOM chairman should be fast tracked. “I think next year, 2018, is gonna be fairly a crunch year to make sure all the preparations for 2019 are in place… The sooner we get a chairman for GECOM in place, the better it is going to be for that process,” Quinn expressed.President David Granger has already rejected two lists of nominees for the position of GECOM Chairman submitted by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, who has since agreed to compile a third list.Last month, Jagdeo told reporters that he was in the final stages of preparing a third list of nominees for the GECOM Chairmanship post. “I had committed to submitting a third list publically and with the President, and I believe that I should continue with that process… (And) I am hoping that from this third list, someone would be chosen, and then it would become a moot issue,” Jagdeo had stated.However, the Opposition Leader explained that while he is committed to submitting the third list, persons are skeptical about having their names put forward as nominees because they do not want to be considered unsuitable.Nevertheless, Jagdeo noted that should President Granger deem this new list of names unacceptable, there is a process agreed upon to ensure that a suitable candidate is appointed.President David GrangerPresident Granger has been holding strong that Article 161 (2) of the Constitution of Guyana prescribes for the Chairman of the Elections Commission to be “a person who holds or who has held office as a judge of a court…or who is qualified to be appointed as any such judge, or any other fit and proper person…”Having interpreted “fit and proper” to mean any group of qualified persons, the Opposition Leader in December submitted his first list, nominating the following persons: Attorney Christopher Ram, Conflict Resolution Specialist Lawrence Lachmansingh, (retired) Major General Norman McLean, Business executive Ramesh Dookhoo, Indian Rights Activist Rhyaan Shah, and History Professor James Rose for the post at the helm of GECOM.The Head of State rejected the list, saying that the nominees have to be a judge, retired judge, or possess qualifications to be a judge, as well as not be an activist or member of any political party.Following weeks of impasse, Jagdeo finally agreed to return to the drawing board, and submitted a new list of nominees, comprising: retired Justice of Appeal BS Roy; retired Justice William Ramlall; former Magistrate Oneidge Walrond-Allicock; Attorneys Kashir Khan and Nadia Sagar; and businessman and pilot, Captain Gerald Gouveia.President Granger rejected this second list as well, saying it was “unacceptable” and that ALL of the nominees should be a judge, retired judge, or qualified to be a judge. The President has argued that he needs to have options on the list, so all of the nominees have to be qualified.In the meantime, local businessman Marcel Gaskin had moved to the High Court back in March to challenge the constitutionality of President David Granger’s reasoning behind his rejection of Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo’s first list of six nominees for the GECOM Chairmanship post.In the court action, Gaskin sought from the Court a declaratory order on the meaning of Article 161(2). The businessman, who is the brother of Business Minister Dominic Gaskin, wanted to know whether the list of nominees to be submitted by the Opposition Leader must include a judge, a retired judge or a person qualified to be a judge, as being claimed by the President.Acting Chief Justice Roxane George-Wiltshire, SC, overruled the President’s interpretation of the Constitution, finding that there is no particular preference for the appointment of persons within the Judiciary for the GECOM chairmanship.In her determination, Justice George found that there was no valid argument to support the idea that the Chairman should be a judge, former judge, or person eligible to be a judge; and noted that persons from each category are equally eligible for the post.The Chief Justice pointed out that the word “any” in the other category, “…any other fit and proper person”, widens the category, and “does not restrict the qualification or profession” from which the nominee should be drawn. She added that there was no mandatory category, and all the categories have equal weight.