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Eustace: We will not accept this election result

Eustace: We will not accept this election result

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Arnhim Eustace, Political Leader of the New Democratic Party (NDP), in an emergency address to the nation on Tuesday evening, gave notice of political and legal action following the recent general elections.{{more}}

In his address at 9 p.m. – just about 24 hours after preliminary results showed that the Unity Labour Party (ULP) had won the December 13 elections, eight seats to seven – Eustace warned that once compelling evidence of election rigging is forthcoming, the NDP will aggressively pursue all legal actions and international redress to have the elections dismissed as unfair, unjust, undemocratic, and null and void.

On this note, he said the NDP will not accept the elections results.

“Don’t for one minute think we haven’t picked up the scent of cheating,” said Eustace.

“Having now had time to study the results and to assess the statistical validity against all polling data leading up to and during these elections, there is now cause for serious concern,” Eustace said.

On the issue of fraud, the NDP President said there are already several constituencies in which the NDP has enough evidence of actions which have violated the Representation of the People Act Section 55 of Section 5.

The evidence in the NDP’s possession, Eustace contended, has made the results in each constituency open to appeal and possible dismissal of the Area Representatives holding them.

In the meantime, Eustace said the NDP’s lawyers will be reaching out to the OAS, CARICOM and the wider international legal community to scrutinize every element of the elections.

“Where we find criminality, we will pursue prosecution immediately with the full force of international law. We will in addition to the proposed criminal proceedings, file elections petitions challenging the return of identified members of the Parliament on the grounds of fraud, breach of the Representation of the People Act and the Elections Laws of this country,” said Eustace in his 12 minute address on NICE Radio.

Eustace said on the day of elections, numerous examples of cheating surfaced and in some cases the Supervisor of Elections had been duly notified.

He listed other areas of concern as: “evidence of widespread ULP election bribery”; “the removal of the NDP’s campaign material”; “the misuse of Hurricane Tomas relief funds”; “the spineless silence of the Christian Council and the National Monitoring and Consultative Committee”; “the Prime Minister’s threats against lawyers representing the NDP”; “over 20,000 plus dead people on the voters’ list, false registering of voters, attempted double voting and illegal voting on elections day.”

Without being specific, Eustace said the results of two constituencies are of concern to the NDP and the party’s efforts are focused on these for the time being. He said both were called for the ULP and they both seem to indicate irregularities.

Eustace charged that the NDP will be holding the Supervisior of Elections (Sylvia Findlay-Scrubb) to public and independent account despite the party’s greatest respect for this individual.

“During the run up to these elections we submitted information to her specifying many examples of alleged cheating and we’re yet to receive even the courtesy of a response, let alone any action in line with her responsibilities,” said Eustace.

Eustace disclosed that the independent volunteer lawyers representing the NDP were on the ground on Monday and are considering criminal complaints against individuals who cheated either by trying to vote in a constituency in which they did not live, or by trying to double vote in two constituencies.

“My dear people of St.Vincent and the Grenadines, this conspiracy to defraud our electorate seems to run deeper and much deeper than at first meets the eye. Evidence suggests widespread and systematic irregulaties that were designed to affect the outcome of the elections,” said Eustace.

He argued that regardless of the conclusion of the oberver teams, the NDP is of the view that there were irregularities that affected the outcome of the elections.

He said in the meantime, this country will continue under the ULP administration.

“My dear people, you saw the queues on election day. You were there. You know the NDP turnout. You saw it yourself. You saw the massive crowd at our rallies – the largest ever gathering of people in our country’s history.

“An NDP win was clear as day to everyone that had eyes to see, but somehow I believe we’ve been cheated out of a brighter future,” said Eustace.

“Don’t think for a moment that this matter is over, Prime Minister Gonsalves. This is just the beginning,” said Eustace.

For the time being, Eustace announced that the NDP will show restraint and will conduct it’s operations with honour and integrity.

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