BVI: No Clear Election Winner-Coalition Govt. in the Making

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The Progressive Virgin Islands Movement  (PVIM) Tuesday said while it is prepared to participate in the negotiations for a new government following Monday’s inconclusive general election, it is committed to integrity, accountability, and transparency.

The British Virgin Islands appears heading towards a coalition government after none of the parties that contested the general election won a clear majority to take control of the 13-member parliament, according to preliminary figures.

The ruling Virgin Islands Party (VIP), which had won eight seats in the last general election, secured six seats this time around, while the PVIM and the National Democratic Party (NDP) each won three seats.

The other seat was won by the Progressives United.

There were 10 independent candidates.

Premier Dr. Natalio Wheatley, speaking at a VIP rally on Saturday night, had urged supporters not to allow the Governor to select the territory’s next leader.

“Reminding me what the Constitution about forming a new government it says ‘the party with a majority forms the new government, the one who can command the majority in the House of Assembly’. The Constitution also says if the members who are elected cannot agree on who is the leader, the Governor selects the leader,” the Premier said.

“Look in the Constitution, if you cannot select a leader the Governor selects the leader. Do you want the Governor selecting your leader, the people of the Virgin Islands? So, you want to know what you have to do, you have to vote VIP all the way.”

In a statement, the PVIM said early Tuesday morning that it had been involved in negotiations with the winners of the elections, adding that the results of the polls have “brought these Virgin Islands to a historic place.

“The voice of the people has reverberated throughout each district, indicating a resounding need for a coalition Government in taking this territory forward through the turbulent time it finds itself, in this era of change where stability is needed for a better Virgin Islands.”

It said given this situation, the party has had to come “to some hard decisions as we put this country first.

“Rest assured we will not compromise our principles and values of integrity, transparency, and accountability, amongst others, because we know that these things matter to you most, as they do to us.”

The PVIM said a further meeting is planned for later on Tuesday “to decide where we go”, insisting that its position will be guided by the interest of the country.

“Therefore, we will be coming to you, the public, to present this full picture. Again, rest assured you elected and placed us here for a reason and we will keep our commitment to integrity, accountability, and transparency at the forefront.”


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