Minister of Constitutional Reform speaks on the country’s laws on bi-elections

Minister of Constitutional Reform speaks on the country’s laws on bi-elections

The Elections and Boundaries Department is preparing for the imminent bi-election in Toledo East.  The date for the area’s nomination and election dates are yet to be confirmed as the Governor General would have to issue a writ with the official dates.  Meanwhile, Love News understands that the department has already begun identifying the public officers who will be working the bi-election, as well as the identification of stations for nomination, polling, and counting.  Our newsroom understands that the bi-election will cost the government an estimated three hundred thousand dollars.  Minister of Constitutional Reform, Henry Charles Usher, spoke on the country’s laws on bi-elections directly relating to the timeframe for the bi-election.  

Henry Charles Usher, PUP Chairman: “The Constitution requires that we have a by-election within 90 days of vacancy being created in the National Assembly. So, sadly, the honorable -”

Troy Gabb, Host, The Morning Show: “So, it’ll be 90 days from the date, Honorable Mike Espat passed away.”

Henry Charles Usher, PUP Chairman: “Well, that is probably the assumption because it’s not specified when the vacancy starts. The idea of someone passing away in office is not contemplated in the Constitution. They speak about other vacancies, they speak about persons resigning or being recalled or crossing the floor even and then there’s a specific date as to when those vacancies start but there is not a specific reference to if somebody passes away in office and maybe the PCC needs to look at that to see when the vacancy actually starts. It’s just really for logistical reasons as to 90 days from which date. The date he passes or… at least you should give the area a time, a period of mourning before you say “okay, jump right back into some kind of election.” If you look at other countries there is a period of mourning before the vacancy actually is recognized. So it’s not about, oh, he passed away one day and then the clock starts to tick.”

As it relates to the candidates for Toledo East, the UDP has endorsed Dennis Williams while the PUP will be holding a convention on June 2 to elect its standard bearer; and Ray Coleman will be running independently.

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