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Overseas voters were asked to take photo of ballot – PLP official


Some Kittitian voters living in the diaspora were asked to take photos of their ballots to ensure that they would be placed on a flight back home.{{more}}

This is according to deputy chair of the People’s Labour Party (PLP), Craig Tucket, who called into the New Times radio programme of St Vincent and the Grenadines yesterday to “bring awareness to the plight of the people of St Kitts and Nevis” during last week’s elections.

The PLP is one of the three members of the Team Unity coalition that won the general elections in St Kitts/Nevis on February 16, defeating the St Kitts and Nevis Labour Party (SKNLP) of Dr Denzil Douglas. The other two political parties making up the coalition are the Peoples Action Movement and the Concerned Citizens Movement of Nevis.

The PLP deputy chair claimed that some persons who came in on chartered flights organized by the SKNLP voted for the opposing Team Unity once they arrived at the polls.

However, Tucket said that some persons were asked to take photos of their ballots.

“People came wearing red shirts; when they reach the airport, take off the red shirt, went to the polling station and do what they had to do. Some of them were told that they should go inside the polling station, take pictures of the ballot to prove, otherwise they not going to get the other half of the ticket to go home,” he said.

Delayed flights into St Kitts were another issue for voters on election day.

Tucket also said that SKNLP supporters were given preference on flights into St Kitts, while persons thought to be supporting Team Unity were bumped off flights.

For one particular charter, Tucket said about 80 persons were bumped off a flight once persons had done checks on the travellers’ Facebook profiles to gauge what they were saying about the election.

“When you take off people, remember you have to change the manifest, you have to go through national security and so on and that is not an easy process, so they had a delay,” he explained.

The PLP deputy chairman also highlighted other aspects of the 2015 St Kitts election which he noted were done in an effort to thwart the process.

According to Tucket, the Opposition only received the voters’ list two days before the election, so the period of time to lay their objections to names on the list had elapsed.

Furthermore, he noted that anomalies were observed where 6,000 ballots were printed for a constituency with 3,000 people.

Tucket also made reference to the delay in the announcement of the results and the swearing in of the Prime Minister, because of the actions of the supervisor of elections.

However, he declared that “no matter when elections would have been called, no matter early or late, the results would have been the same.”

Team Unity, led by Dr Timothy Harris, won seven of the 11 parliamentary seats. The SKNLP, led by former prime minister Dr Denzell Douglas for the past 20 years, won three seats, while the Nevis Reformation Party won one seat. (BK)