OAS to observe St Vincent and the Grenadines general elections
The Organization of American States (OAS) will be sending an Electoral Observation Mission (EOM) to the general elections in St Vincent and the Grenadines on December 9.
The Washington-based hemispheric body said this based on an agreement signed on Monday by representatives from the OAS and St Vincent and the Grenadines.
OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro said the mission will be the 14th deployed in 2015 to various countries of the hemisphere.
He noted that the mission will focus on issues of electoral organisation and gender equality, and respect for conditions of equality and transparency in the electoral competition.
Interim Representative of St Vincent and the Grenadines to the OAS, Omari Seitu Williams, welcomed the EOM to his country, adding that it will be the fifth mission that the OAS has deployed to the country after general elections in 2001, 2005 and 2010, and the 2009 Referendum on Constitutional reform.
The OAS said the mission will be led by the Chief of Staff of the Secretary General, Ambassador Jacinth Henry-Martin.
Observers of different nationalities will be deployed in all 15 constituencies of the country before, during and after the electoral process.
Observers say the general election will be a close race between the incumbent Unity Labor Party (ULP) of Prime Minister Dr Ralph E. Gonsalves and the main opposition New Democratic Party (NDP) led by economist and former Prime Minister Arnhim Eustace.
Two other minor parties are contesting the elections.