SABA (THE BOTTOM) - The Voting Bureau Public Entity Saba came together on Thursday morning to check the reports (‘processen verbaal’) of the two polling stations ahead of the publication of the election results. The Voting Bureau found no discrepancies in the reports and subsequently approved them.
Acting Island Governor Amelia Nicholson, as Chairperson of the Voting Bureau Public Entity Saba, opened the meeting at 11:00am. Island Governor Jonathan Johnson, as Chairman of the Main Voting Bureau, handed over the reports of The Bottom and Windwardside polling stations. There were two reports per polling station: one for the Island Council elections and one for the election of an Electoral College for the First Chamber.
Nicholson and Voting Bureau members Karlijn Verblakt, Bridgette Hassell and Wim Schellingerhout individually reviewed the reports. After it was determined that there were no discrepancies, the chairperson and the members signed the documents. Present to witness the procedure were the two international, independent election observers of the Organization of American States (OAS).
Thursday’s meeting was public and was livestreamed via the Public Entity Saba Facebook page. That same day, the election results, along with the reports of the polling station, were published on the website of the Public Entity Saba. The documents are available for public viewing at the Government Administration Building.
Saba’s Island Council elections on Wednesday, March 15 had a voter turnout of 83.64% with 1,040 persons casting their vote of the in total 1,259 eligible voters. The turnout this time was lower than in the previous Island Council elections on March 20, 2019 when the voter turnout was 92.12% and the number of eligible voters was 1,078.
The election results confirmed that 617 of the 1,040 valid votes went to the Windward Islands People’s Movement (WIPM), representing 59.33% of the votes. The WIPM obtained three seats. Elected as provisional Island Council members for the WIPM were: Bruce Zagers (191 personal votes), Rolando Wilson (84 personal votes) and Eviton Heyliger (122 personal votes).
The new Party for Progress, Equality and Prosperity (PEP) received 324 votes in total (31.15%) and obtained two seats. Saskia Matthew (137 personal votes) and Hemmie van Xanten (26 personal votes) were elected as provisional Island Council members. The blank list of Dave Levenstone, list 4, received 95 votes and as such did not obtain a seat. The new Saba Caring People Party of Enrico “Cuchie” Klaber received 4 votes.
On Thursday, the results of the election of the Electoral College were also announced. A total of 496 votes were cast, of which the majority, 177 or 35.69%, went to WIPM Leader Bruce Zagers. The voter turnout for the Electoral College elections was 59.3%. Saba has five seats in the Electoral College which has as its sole purpose to vote for the First Chamber. Only the WIPM candidates were on the list for the Electoral College elections.
The Main Voting Bureau will have its final meeting to definitely determine the election results next week Thursday, March 23. The new Island Council is scheduled to be sworn in on Wednesday, March 29.