ST. VINCENT-Former prime minister believes last general election was “rigged”

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Dr Ralph-Gonsalves

Former prime minister Sir James Mitchell says he believes that even the ruling Unity Labour Party (ULP) did not expect to win the 2015 general elections and that he believes the polls were rigged.

The ULP won the election by an 8-7 margin for a fourth consecutive term in office. But the main opposition New Democratic Party (NDP) is challenging the results of the December 9, 2015 general elections in the constituencies of Central Leeward and North Windward.

James-Mitchell
Sir James Mitchell

The NDP, citing irregularities, is asking the court to overturn the results and declare its candidates, Ben Exeter and Lauron Baptiste as the winners or to order fresh elections in those two constituencies. The matter is still be fore the High Court.

Sir James, a founding member of the opposition party, told radio listeners on Monday that there was need for electoral reform here and that the voters list should be cleaned up.

“The entire voters list should be revised and not within the existing structure,” he said, adding that he believes that the last elections were rigged.

“I am sure that even the ULP did not expect to win the last election and this I am saying quite frankly that the elections are rigged.

“If you are dealing with theft, even in a home, first of all, you do something about it. You put in burglar bars. If burglar bars don’t work, the next step is you get in your camera and see that you can identify what is going wrong,” Sir James said.

“You need to appoint people to check the list in every constituency and every polling division. Revise the list, modernise the list.

“We should be proud when we have an election to say that we have had 80 per cent of the people voting. It’s not good to know that we have a lot of people on a list that haven’t been back to the country for 20 years; people who are dead [are] still on the list.”

Sir James dismissed the argument that this cannot be done within the existing framework.

“I do not accept that. We should get technical assistance from places like the Commonwealth and do over the entire list.”

 

Sir James said that the Parliament should amend the Representation of the People Act and abolish registration of voters after the Parliament is dissolved.

“This business of saying that you have got young people up to the last minute to register, I would like a survey to be done on how many young people have been registered in that little 10-day period, how many people come of age?”

He said that a person who turns 18 before Parliament is dissolved should register before the dissolution in order to be on the voter’s list for that particular election.

“You have no excuse not to be registered and this last-minute registration allows for a lot of games of moving people from constituency to constituency. It allows for manipulation, which the Supervisor of Elections cannot control and when you compare the period of proper registration and all that has to be done, like putting up the notices of the list for two weeks, etc., that can’t be done during the period of last-minute registration.

“I would like to see something done about it, it can be done by amendment to the legislation,” Sir James said.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. You sound like some minority here in Antigua who just cant admit defeat. They so hurt over their party’s beating they saying the elections were bought. Still eating to see how 23, 000 plus persons were bought while their party secured a little over 13, 000 votes sore losers

  2. Ralph Gonsalves as prime minister is the result of a rigged election where was no official final count!. After all, in some cases the supervisor of election giving evidence under oath cannot give an account of the ballots casted, unused or spoilt. As late as 2018 according to one witness, the supervisor of elections was enquiring from about a Form 16 which under oath, she described “the statement of Poll, an audit or accounting of all ballots and the presiding officer accounts for all ballots.

  3. Politics A Run By Political Gangsters.Politics Is An Old Business Model Use To Control The
    Masses.We The Electorates Give Those Crooks Legitimacy..They Are In The Pockets Of C&W
    Property Developer..Big Banks Investments..Corporations..They Are The Ones That Control Those Politicians..They All Are The Same Once You Get Into The Nitty Gritty.You Wil See That The Only Time Those Thugs Comes Around Is When They Need Our Votes Promise Is Jobs Development Infrastructure Bullshit We Have To Create A Climate Of Discontent With The Status Quo Unity Is Strength..Soon Those Economic Gangsters Will Come In But Up Estates Beach Side Hotels Resorts..And You Will Be Left With A Walk Way..Donald Trump And His Cronies Will Soon Come In But Up The Land Then Put Up A Sign.Private Property.Keep Out Of You Will Be Shot.Prosecuted A Word Not In This Gangsters World.

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