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Posted March 29th. 2001 Stabroek News - Pictures Elections 2001
gets Parliament seat after results error found
PPP/Civic to lose one
By William Walker
The United Force (TUF) has won a seat in Parliament at the expense of the PPP/Civic after an error in submitting results for a Charlestown division was discovered.
It is understood that the Elections Commission will re-issue the final declaration of results. The commission has been given legal advice that because the initial results were not published in the Official Gazette and no seats were allocated, a change could still be made. However this will probably not be until after the case currently before the court challenging the swearing in of President-elect Bharrat Jagdeo has been considered. The commission will publish the complete election results, station by station.
The composition of the Parliament will therefore be: PPP/C 34 seats, PNC/R 27, GAP/WPA two, ROAR one and TUF one.
Stabroek News learnt that last Wednesday when the final results were being calculated without the use of any computers, a deputy returning officer for Region Four had failed to include the amount for an entire sub district (11 polling stations) in her totals. This mistake had been overlooked by both her supervisor and by Alwyn Edwards, returning officer for Region Four. The polling stations affected were all in the Charlestown area, including Ketley Primary, Dolphin Secondary, Charlestown Secondary and St Stephen's Annex schools. This mistake was reportedly discovered on Monday night, and when corrected resulted in the addition of some 2,016 votes to the PNC/R total and 723 to the PPP/C along with some others to the smaller parties. The effect of this was to increase the total number of valid votes and thus the quota to win a seat in parliament. The result was a reduction in the PPP/C's remaining votes, which had originally given the party an extra seat. So despite the PPP/C getting more votes in the second count, it lost the extra seat to TUF.
This error was not noticed in the preliminary results because not all the statements of poll had been submitted at that time.
Chief Election Officer (ag) Gocool Boodoo, wrote to Commission Chairman Joe Singh on Tuesday to "crave the attention of members of the commission of an entry of omission from Polling District Four reported to me on Monday, March 26, at 1930 hrs by the returning officer for the said district after careful examination of an earlier submission... I hereby confirm an omission of results for division no 4133652(A-J) at the geographical constituency level.
"Under the circumstance I hereby seek the commission's intervention pursuant to Section 22 of the Elections Laws Amendment Act No 15 2000 to cause the removal of this difficulty forthwith and to allow due process for the omitted information to be added to the declared results. Enclosed is the necessary information together with supporting affidavits of persons held accountable."
The chairman notified the parties of the error yesterday morning and invited them to a meeting later. There, the parties expressed to Boodoo general disappointment at the discovery and asked for more details on other results. They were given copies of the affidavits signed by the officers.
Stabroek News understands that the final declaration of results for all ten regions and the affected Region Four should now be:
The new total of valid votes 396,551.
To work out the
seats, the commission has to divide 396,551 by 65 seats to get a quota of 6,101.
With 209,754 votes - taking account of the geographic seats and the national seats - the PPP/C would receive 34 seats with remaining votes of 2,320.
The PNC/R with 166,090 votes would receive 27 seats and a remainder of 1,363.
GAP/WPA with 9,519 would get one seat and a remainder of 3,418.
ROAR would have no seat and its 3,677 votes.
TUF would have no seat and its 2901 votes.
With three more seats to be allocated, ROAR with the highest total of remaining votes would get one, GAP/WPA, the second highest would get the next and TUF the last.
This will be the first time in many years that five parties will have seats in Parliament.
Posted march 24th. 2001 Results from 1997
Though victorious PPP/C has lost ground PNC/R support remained solid.
The PPP/Civic victory is not all good news for the ruling party with almost 11,000 votes from 1997 siphoned off to other parties, while PNC REFORM support remained solid. PPP/C votes in 1997 were 220,138 (54%) and this time it gained 209,031(53%).
Whilst there was a decrease in voters of 4,945 - 393,709 this time and 398,654 in 1997, there was no corresponding decline for the PNC/R.
In fact that party marginally increased its support from 161,719(40%) to 164,074 (42%). Throughout the regions there were no dramatic shifts in voting patterns between the two parties over 1997. An encouraging indicator for the small parties was that they increased their number of total votes from 16,801 to 20,604, even with a smaller electorate. But The United Force (TUF) was wiped out in the hinterland by GAP/WPA. TUF won 5,903 votes in 1997 close to half coming from Region Nine. This time TUF won a national total of only 2,892 with 1,490 in Region Nine. The decision by WPA to join GAP enabled its survival as a parliamentary party.
of regions : Map
Region No. 1 or the Barima/Waini Region
Region No. 2 or the Pomeroon/Supenaam Region
Region No. 3 or the Essequibo Islands/ West Demerara Region
Region No. 4 or the Demerara/Mahaica Region
Region No. 5 or the Mahaica/Berbice Region
Region No. 6 or the East Berbice/Corentyne Region
Region No. 7 or the Cuyuni/Mazaruni Region
Region No. 8 or the Potaro/Siparuni Region
Region No. 9 or the Upper Takutu/Upper Essequibo Region
Region No. 10 or the Upper Demerara/Berbice Region
In its 1997 merger with the Guyana Labour Party as the Alliance for Guyana, the WPA won 4,803 - over half from Region Four and only 342 in Region Nine. This time the coalition won 9,500 votes of which 2,515 were cast in Region Nine and in Region Four WPA's supposed base it received only 1,399. Despite being based in Region Three Ravi Dev could only get 623 votes, proving that a prophet is never appreciated among his own.
His largest constituency was Region Six, but even then his votes compared to the PPP/C only amounted to two per cent. Nevertheless, the PPP/C probably lost one seat in Parliament because of ROAR and its vigorous personal attacks on Dev showed it had realised this threat.
Talking of prophets, C.N. Sharma doubled his votes from 1,248 in 1997 to 2,768 this time. Support for Asgar Ally's GDP fell off sharply with the party getting half (1,313) the votes it received in 1997(2,566). A comparison of the PPP/C and the PNC/R, then and now.
One interesting footnote is the large number of votes in the regional election for the Justice for All party in Region Four. In the general election JFAP scored only 1,965 but in the regional portion 3,129 persons voted for the party. It appears that supporters of the two main parties wanted some representation from the JFAP and expressed this in a way that did not jeopardise the prospects of the two main parties.
What is a little unusual is that overall 2,000 more regional votes were cast than general and this could be that persons simply did not understand how to cast their vote. (William Walker)
Voting up three per cent from 1997
Anecdotal reports of heavy voting have been confirmed with a comparison of the 1997 figures showing an increase of some three per cent in the registered voters who actually went to the polls.
In 1997, the percentage of valid votes cast of the actual registered voters, according to the CARICOM Audit Report, was 86.394 per cent.
Final results from Monday's voting show a rise to 89.44 per cent.
All regions had increased voter turnout save for Region One, which remained the lowest at 77 per cent. Regions Seven and Eight saw the largest jumps with eight per cent increases over 1997. Region Nine also saw an increase of six per cent, perhaps indicating that the intense campaigning by GAP/WPA and TUF for Amerindian support encouraged residents to vote.
Region Four went up by four per cent to 89 per cent. But the highest voter turnouts were in Regions Three (92%), Five(93%) and Six (91%)-- areas where the PPP/C had strong support. All three regions saw an increase of two per cent from 1997.
PPP/C (35 seats), PNC (27 seats) set to continue Parliament domination
The main actors - the PPP/C and the PNC/R will continue their decades-old run on the stage of the National Assembly. The only changes to the script are bit parts for new minor players.
The PPP/C will lose one seat in Parliament. The PNC REFORM will gain two and the two new parties are GAP/WPA with two and ROAR with one.
The allocation of the geographic seats under the new electoral system did not create a possible situation where an extra seat was required in Parliament.
To work out the shape of the overall Parliament according to proportional representation, the Commission would have to divide the number of votes by the total seats.
This yields a figure of 6057 votes per seat.
PPP/C 209031 ......34 seats and a remainder of 3093
PNC/R 164074 ...... 27 seats and a remainder of 535
GAP/WPA 9500 ...... 1 seat and a remainder of 3443
ROAR 3664 ...... 0 seat and a remainder of 3664
This totals 62 seats and leaves three more to be distributed
One goes to ROAR with the largest remainder of 3664;
one more to GAP/WPA and
one more to the PPP/C.
The final configuration of the National Assembly is therefore:
The previous Parliament had 36 seats for the PPP/C;
25 seats for PNC and
2 each for the Alliance for Guyana, which comprised the Working People's Alliance (WPA) and two other groups, and TUF.
Posted March 23rd 6.00am Stabroek News
PPP/Civic declared 2001 poll winner
Elections Commission agreed by consensus
After a tortuous
day-long wait, the incumbent PPP/C was this morning declared the winner of the
2001 elections with the Elections Commission agreeing by consensus that the
counting of votes was transparent.
The People's Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) garnered a 44,957- vote lead over the People's National Congress REFORM (PNC/R), securing 35 seats in the National Assembly.
The PNC secured 27 seats;
the Guyana Action Party/Working People's Alliance (GAP/WPA) secured 2 seats and the Rise Organise and Rebuild Guyana movement (ROAR) 1 seat, based on the highest remainder after geographic and national top up seats were awarded. The United Force - which had two seats in the previous Parliament - did not win one this time around.
At a 4.15 am press conference, Elections Commission Chairman, Major General (rtd) Joe Singh assured that the declaration was a consensus position. Earlier yesterday it had been suggested that the Commission was split 4 to 2 on whether to declare the results and this was reported in the first edition of today's Stabroek News as no Commission official had been available to comment. The Commission aside from Singh comprises three PPP/C members and three from the PNC/R.
PNC/R nominee on the commission, Haslyn Parris, told the press briefing at the media centre at the Tower Hotel that the methodology used and the counting of the votes by the various officers were as required by law and the process was transparent and clean.
"There is nothing to suggest that the result announced is not an accurate account (of the votes cast)," Parris said this morning. The three PNC/R nominees and the three PPP/C nominees on the commission were present at the announcing of the final results by acting Chief Election Officer, Gocool Boodoo.
The number of valid votes cast in the general elections was 393,709 of which the PPP/C scooped up 209,031 and the PNC/R 164,074.
GAP/WPA captured 9,500 of these votes and ROAR 3,664.
The United Force secured 2,892 votes and the Justice for All Party 2,768 - insufficient to have allowed either to secure a seat on the basis of the highest remainder after the geographic and top up seats were apportioned.
The Guyana Democratic Party secured 1,338 votes.
The seats allocation, expected to be confirmed later today by the Elections Commission, will see GAP/WPA securing a geographic seat for Region 9 and a national seat on the basis of the second highest remainder.
The PPP/C picks up 11 geographic seats; one each in Regions 1, 2, 5 & 7 two in Regions 3 & 6 and three in Region 4. It secured a total of 35 seats based on its national votes.
The PNC/R on the other hand, secured 13 geographic seats; four in Region 4, two in Region 10 and one each in every other region but nine.
ROAR notched up a seat on the basis of the highest remainder after the geographic seats were assigned.
The number of votes cast represents 89.4% of the registered voters. The number of rejected ballots will be announced later today.
The final results for the elections were declared after the media camped out for six hours at the Elections Commission media centre and four days after the close of polls. The results were first supposed to be available at 4 pm yesterday but this was put back repeatedly. After an exhaustive Commission meeting for most of the day yesterday its members finally gathered this morning to solemnise the results.
With the official declaration, the incumbent, President Bharrat Jagdeo is expected to be sworn in for a full five-year term after serving as head of state from August 1999 after President Janet Jagan stepped down because of ill health.
Yesterday, the Commission was also grappling with complaints from the PNC/R that tallying in Region Three and Four for the parties was incorrect. The PNC/R had also called for a manual verification and this had taken up the bulk of the time yesterday. PNC/R officials could not be reached for comment this morning on the official declaration of the results.
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