OAS praises Nevis on clean elections

The CARICOM electoral observation mission left Nevis Tuesday after a short period of observation of the pre-election day preparations and activities and the conduct of the poll of July 11, 2011.

Of particular importance was the court case about names of several persons being expunged from the voters’ list and the court’s ruling.

However, the mission congratulated the people of Nevis on their commitment to the traditions of democracy demonstrated by the voter turnout and the patience, discipline and peaceful disposition displayed while waiting their turn to exercise their franchise.

In their report, the team noted the passion expressed by the people in safeguarding the right to vote during their meetings with stakeholders and in discussions with ordinary citizens. The OAS also commended the efforts made by the electoral authorities to organize this event and the performance of the polling officials who conducted the elections in an orderly and professional manner that facilitated the free expression of the will of the people.

However, with respect to the conduct of the poll and other electoral processes, the team observed several short-comings.

The report stated, “There are areas of concern which we believe will require serious and immediate attention. The major task which we believe lies ahead is to strengthen certain critical aspects of the process, not only to achieve greater efficiency and effectiveness in its management and administration, but also in enhancing the existing legislative framework. We believe that this will contribute to the continuing efforts of the people of Nevis to build on the successes achieved in the area of electoral reform and in ensuring that the country’s democracy is certain and enduring.”

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