KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent – The Ralph Gonsalves-led Unity Labour Party (ULP) made history here tonight by winning its fourth consecutive general election.
However, it had to settle for the same slender one seat margin as it did in the 2010 poll.
The incumbent ULP won eight of the 15 seats, according to the preliminary results. The main opposition New Democratic Party (NDP) won the remaining seven seats.
“I am humbled by the significant and historic victory,” Gonsalves told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).
“A fourth term with an increase in the popular vote votes and I am asking the nation to celebrate this victory in peace and maturity,” he added.
It was the fourth straight election since 2001 that the Arnhim Eustace-led NDP lost to Gonsalves, who easily retained his North Central Windward seat, polling 2,998 votes as against 743 for Kenroy Johnson of the NDP. Haran Grant, the candidate of the Democratic Republican Party (DRP), received just 17 votes.
While failing to capture the government, Eustace retained his East Kingstown seat, polling 2,443 votes to defeat the ULP’s Luke Brown with 2,298 votes and Kariam Paris, 13. He is yet to concede defeat.
In the keenly contested election, the closest race was in North Leeward where Patel Mathews barely retained the seat for the NDP by a mere seven votes, polling 2, 259 to the ULP’s Carlos James’ 2,252.
Another close contest was in the South Leeward constituency where the NDP’s Nigel Stephenson was able to retain the seat by 13 votes. Stephenson polled, 2,638 as against 2, 625 for attorney Jomo Thomas, a ULP senator in the last parliament.
The incumbent Minister of Agriculture Saboto Caesar easily retained the South Central seat, polling 2,484 to Addison Thomas’ 1,908 for the NDP. Kenneth Horne of the Green Party received a mere three votes.
Camillo Gonsalves, the son of the ULP leader, who contested the East St. George seat as a newcomer, defeated NDP chairman Linton Lewis, the former Windward Islands cricketer. He polled 3, 124 votes to Lewis’ 2, 521 votes in a four way fight.