Wingrove George Vanishes, New Supervisor Of Election Selected LK Hewlett Story Updated: April 17th 2015 at 3:56 pm
As the criminal investigation into breaches of the Electoral Offices winds down, Supervisor of Elections Wingrove George has reportedly “disappeared”. The Observer was reliably informed that George left island reportedly without notice to his employers and has not been heard from. Calls to his cellphone continue to go straight to voicemail. The news of George’s alleged disappearance comes on the heels of Attorney General Hon. Vincent Byron Jr. indicating that the investigation was nearing its end. The local Criminal Investigation Department (CID), aided by British computer forensic investigators, handled the probe. As the investigation was ongoing, Byron would not say if any Electoral Office officials had been implicated in the probe, although a government source told The Observer charges could be laid in the matter. George had been instructed to cooperate with investigators. His actions during the announcing of election results in the early morning hours of Tuesday February 17 formed part of the investigation. While informing the public of poll results from the Feb 16 election, George disappeared from the Electoral Office for several hours without explanation. Regional leaders and heads of regional organizations registered their grave concern with what was transpiring in St. Kitts-Nevis and called on George to resume his duties with immediate effect. The local Bar Association threatened legal action against the Supervisor and Electoral Commission if the official did not carry out his responsibility regarding the election results. Later that morning as the public grew more perturbed at the lack of information about the outcome of the election, George indicated he would resume results by midday [Feb 17]. It was not until after 4pm that he announced the winners of each constituency and that Team Unity had been elected the new government. Over the ensuing weeks the new administration demanded George file the necessary reports and the full election results were not revealed to the public until March 5. The Observer understands that George had written to the government demanding they turn the electoral office back over to his control. The offices in both St. Kitts and Nevis had been closed, sealed and put under police guard immediately after the election. Nevis has already announced a change of staff at its electoral office. Retired civil servant Ernestine Rawlins has replaced Beulah Mills as Manager of the Nevis Electoral Office and new members of staff are undergoing training for when the office re-opens. The Observer understands there will be changes in the staff make up when the St. Kitts office re-opens as well, starting with a new Supervisor of Elections. Reliable sources indicate a new Supervisor has been selected and he comes with a wealth of election experience, from poll clerk to registration officer and a leading role in the 2006 Electoral Reform Exercise. The individual is an active member in his church and is well respected in his community. The Observer understands the decision will soon be formalized and a public announcement made. The Attorney General could not be reached to speak to how the government is handling the Wingrove George situation.