There will be no changes to the boundaries of the 15 constituencies in St. Vincent and the Grenadines for the upcoming general elections.
Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves said that the three-member commission has unanimously decided to keep the current boundaries.
He said on NBC Radio this past week that the Constituency Boundaries Commission had reported one week earlier to Governor General Susan Dougan, who sent a copy to him.
“I imagine that the Leader of the Opposition also received one. The news from the constituency boundaries commission is not particularly eventful in the sense that they didn’t recommend any changes to the boundaries,” the prime minister said.
“So that makes life easier for the — and this was a unanimous report,” he further noted.
The commission was chaired by former permanent secretary Godfred Pompey, who the governor general chose in her own deliberate judgment.
The prime minister said the former top official in the Ministry of National Security is “an excellent public servant”.
The prime minister’s nominee was lawyer Stephen Williams, while Etson Cummings, a retired lecturer in law at the community college, was the nominee of Opposition Leader Godwin Friday.
“But the report was signed by all three of them; it was unanimous. And that’s important from the standpoint of not having difficulties with the Electoral Office to be changing the boundary. So it makes life, administratively, easier for them,” Gonsalves said.
He further stated:
“So I suspect that they, more or less, would be in good shape. I’m told that their preparation for the forthcoming generally elections … are in order, all the various things — getting the ballot boxes, getting the ballot paper and — well you only print the ballot paper after nomination day because you don’t know yet who the persons are, they’re doing their training, they’re doing the registration, they’re doing all the things which we normally do, as a maturing democracy.
“Again, don’t have any worry that we’re going to have a free and fair election reflecting the will of the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.”
General elections are constitutionally due by March 2021 but Gonsalves has said that Vincentians will go to the polls by the end of the year.