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St Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Has there ever been a hundred percent voter turnout in any election in St Kitts and Nevis and the rest of the Caribbean – the thinking is that’s highly unlikely.

However the federation has on record the national poll when the highest number of voters went to the polls – in 1971, when 88 per cent of registered voters actually voted.

The figure comes from research conducted by Supervisor of Elections Elvin Bailey, who explains as well that the lowest rate was recorded in 2004, at 58.5 per cent.

The electoral official says he has analysed the date of the thirteen elections and three by elections held at the Federal level since 1961.

Supervisor of Elections Bailey says it makes for a compelling and interesting history.

He notes that a quarter of these elections were called before the 15th of the month in which they were held, while six of them – 38 per cent were held on or after the 25th of the month.

Seven of the elections - 44 per cent - were held in the first half of the year and the other nine – 56 per cent took place in the second half of the year.  

Bailey says according to his research, there was never an election held in April.

He says too that the data shows that the last time a political party fielded a full slate of candidates was in 1971 when the Peoples Action Movement fielded 10 candidates across the three islands including Anguilla. 

The Supervisor of elections has also pointed out that on three occasions: 1971, 1975 and 1980 Anguilla, despite still being part of the then three-island federation, did not participate in the elections, even though candidates were properly nominated.  

Another revealing fact – that in the early years, the level of spoilt/rejected ballots were very high.

There were 479 in 1961, 639 in 1966, 536 in 1971, and 505 in 1975.

Over the years, eight candidates failed to obtain enough of the votes to regain their deposits.

They failed to get the required 12.5 per cent of the votes polled in the constituencies in which they ran.




Ken Richards
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