Last update: 12-Dec-2013 4:50 am
Thursday, December 12, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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After second recount, UNC wins Moruga
After a second recount the Election and Boundaries Commission (EBC) has officially declared United National Congress (UNC) candidate Phillip Gonzales the winner of the Moruga electoral district in the Princes Town Regional Corporation. Peoples National Movement (PNM) sources said the PNM is not happy with the way the entire process was handled; the party is exploring legal options.
When the votes were tallied after Monday’s Local Government election, PNM candidate Kenwyn Williams was told he won, but by Tuesday morning, UNC candidate Gonzales was informed he was the winner. A recount on Wednesday declared Williams the winner after he bypassed the UNC candidate by 40 votes to claim the seat. However, at the second recount, held at the Gopaul Silochan Memorial Princes Town Presbyterian School yesterday, the EBC declared Gonzales the winner by a narrow margin of ten votes.
Gonzales, the former councillor for that area, received 1,843 votes, while Williams received 1,833, the EBC stated. Williams’ campaign team member Caroline Revello confirmed that Williams was told he had lost. However, she said: “I have no confidence in the results. There were too many mistakes.” Some ballots, considered spoilt and therefore rejected, were later found to be valid, resulting in the second recount, sources told the Sunday Guardian.
In addition, the presiding officer had transposed figures on the night of the election at one of the polling stations. “So instead of giving 86 to the PNM and 29 to the ILP, it was reversed,” said the source. A source also said officials forgot to take the valid ballots, which had been rejected on Monday, out of the envelopes and put them with the accepted ballots when reaching the seventh box during the second recount yesterday.
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