Sun | Jan 20, 2019

PM swearing-in can go ahead without recount results - lawyer

Published:Tuesday | March 1, 2016 | 8:19 AM

Constitutional lawyer Dr Lloyd Barnett says there is nothing in law which would prevent the swearing-in of the prime minister without waiting for the results of a magisterial recount.

A magisterial recount has been requested for the St Mary South East constituency where the People's National Party's Dr Winston Green was declared the winner over the Jamaica Labour Party's Dr Norman Dunn by nine votes.

Yesterday, Director of Elections, Orrette Fisher, said at a press conference that he would not be able to advise the governor general of the outcome of the February 25 general elections until all the results, including those from any possible recount, were in.

However, Dr Barnett, says nothing in law would prevent the prime minister and MPs from being sworn in, although it would be messy should there be a reversal of any of the results.


Constitutional layer, Dr. Lloyd Barnett

Speaking with The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre last evening Fisher clarified that he would be sending the results from the returning officers to the Governor General following the final count.

He said he would also indicate any instances in which a magisterial recount is pending.

He said the decision about whether to go ahead with the swearing in of a prime minister will be the prerogative of the governor general’s office.

The prime minister is typically sworn in soon after the elections, while the MPs are sworn in at the opening of Parliament.