I believe the Antigua & Barbuda Electoral Commission (ABEC)’s decision to have the Barbuda poll taken in Antigua is a sensible move. If the majority of Barbudans are still residing in Antigua then to have the poll taken where most of the electors are makes logistical sense.
That being said… I am yet to be convinced this particular move is supported by law. Having perused the Representation of the People’s (Amendment) Act 2001, I find no section to support moving a polling station to another constituency. Section 35 (see below), which deals with Polling Districts and Polling places, and particularly subsection section 2(c), comes the closest but in my opinion still falls short.
From my reading of the Act, the problem here is it only provides provisions for moving polling stations across districts within the same Constituency. What ABEC is proposing is to move a polling station not to another polling district within the Barbuda constituency (which is impossible since there is one district in Barbuda) but to move it to Antigua within one of the other 16 constituencies.
If you follow the Letter of the law then I would conclude ABEC does not have legal support for the move. Nevertheless, I suppose ABEC could argue since Section 35, subsection 2(c) of the act allows flexibility to move polling places within districts in special circumstances then moving a polling station to another Constituency for a special circumstance does not cause much violence since one could argue it falls within the Spirit of the law.
I believe an amendment to the Act (which has already seen no less than eight amendments) is in order to ensure there is clarity on this matter.