Election for PNP Sandy Bay councillor-candidate ends in 49-49 stalemate
Claudia Gardner, Assignment Coordinator
The Peoples National Party’s (PNP) councillor-candidate run-off for the Sandy Bay Division of the Hanover Parish Council, ended in a stalemate yesterday, with the two contenders, schoolteachers Andria Dehaney-Dinham, and Gregory Allen, polling 49 votes each.
The election was held at the Sandy Bay Primary School, to find a replacement for embattled former Lucea Mayor and four-time councillor Lloyd Hill.Lucea Mayor and four-time councillor Lloyd Hill.
Following the completion of ballot-counting shortly before 6 p.m., presiding officer, Donald Colomathi, announced that the election had ended in a stalemate.
“It means that from my standpoint, I cannot adjudicate further on the matter. Both contenders were in there and you had all their representatives there. I believe the exercise was conducted in a fair and respectful way".
"So at this point it is 49-49 so they are at a deadlock. So this matter will be reported forthwith to the regional chairman, the party general secretary and the party in general. The party normally has their executive meeting on a Monday, so I will also advise them,” Colomathi said.
“For my own integrity, I must advise you that one group was not allowed to participate in the process, because we had supplied to both candidates, a list of eight groups, and yesterday, late, a final list was presented.
A final group was added to the list without the candidates knowing and without even we (election officials) knowing and they came to an agreement – both candidates agreed (to remove that list),” he added.
Following the proceedings, Allen told The Gleaner that he would await the response from the party executive, which had been asked to expedite the matter.
“It was up against an army – and entire army – and I did well ... but let’s see what happens after today,” he said.
Dehaney-Dinham said she too was awaiting word from the party hierarchy.
“I’ve been working in the Sandy Bay Division for such a long time and I had great confidence in coming forward in representing my division. Today I think the proceedings went fairly well. There were some problems with my group and a decision was made to remove that group from the listing.
Considering it is now 49-49 the PNP will be making a decision on the way forward,” she said.