Florida Congressmen: No Matter Who Wins Guyana’s Election, U.S. Should Build Relations With That Nation

Two congressmen from the Sunshine State weighed in on the upcoming elections in Guyana.

While it’s a small nation–less than 800,000 residents–Guyana’s future looks bright thanks to the recent discovery of oil off its shores. The Guyanese government expects $300 million in oil by the end of the year as it starts oil production with some sources estimating that it could be one of the top 10 oil-producing nations in the years to come.

All this being the case, the stakes are high with a National Assembly election scheduled for this coming weekend. Irfaan Ali is challenging incumbent David Granger to be president for the next five years.

Two Florida Republicans–U.S. Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart and Francis Rooney–joined other members of Congress in weighing in on the Guayense elections on Monday. The joined U.S. Reps. Yvette Clarke, D-NY, Eliot Engel, D-NY, Jenniffer González-Colón, R-PR, Gregory Meeks, D-NY, and Albio Sires, D-NJ, to offer a joint statement on the elections.

“We strongly support free, fair, and peaceful elections in Guyana that reflect the will of the Guyanese people. We also recognize the important role of local civil society and international election observers working to safeguard the integrity of the vote. No matter who wins on Sunday, we hope to continue to deepen relations between our two countries and support the Guyanese people in the months and years ahead,” the representatives said.

Rooney sits on the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee, which he served as vice-chairman of when the GOP controlled the chamber, and he leads Republicans on the U.S. House Western Hemisphere Subcommittee.

Reach Kevin Derby at kevin.derby@floridadaily.com.

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