Countdown begins to Nomination Day
(CNS): Although several candidates have already declared their intentions to run in the May General Election from across the political arena, the Elections Office confirmed this week that Nomination Day, the official start of the election campaign, will take place on Wednesday 27 March in all six electoral districts. Candidates must submit their nominations between 8am and 3pm, after which nominations will be closed. Returning Officers from the various districts, with exception of Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, will return to the Elections Office to present all nomination forms to the Supervisor of Elections. All nomination stations are open to the public and the full list of candidates will be available that evening.
This will trigger the start of the official eight week campaign, ending 22 May when Cayman decides its next government. Many candidates have already declared their hands in what is expected to be a record-breaking election when it comes to the number of people expected to run as well as the number of people entitled to vote.
Over 18,550 people are now on the electoral roll across the six districts, where they will vote for 18 people to send to the Legislative Assembly. Six of them will come from the capital of George Town, where more than 7,450 people are now registered to vote.
With four seats also up for grabs in Bodden Town as well as West Bay, these districts are expected to see significant numbers of candidates seeking election. Both the UDP and the PPM have signalled their intention to run a full slate of candidates in the district of West Bay, where the former premier, McKeeva Bush, and Capt Eugene will be running against their former colleagues in government, Cline Glidden and Rolston Anglin, as well as at least two Progressive candidates, as the opposition party runs its first candidates formally under the party banner. A myriad of independent candidates have also been tipped to run in the district and at least two candidates will be representing the Coalition for Cayman.
In Bodden Town minority government candidates Mark Scotland and Dwayne Seymour will be battling four candidates from the PPM as well as a promised full line up from their former political party, the UDP. So far, no independent candidates have declared for that district but C4C candidates as well as a number of independent candidates running on the ‘dump’ issue are also expected to declare their hand in the district. The PPM has already revealed its four candidates for Bodden Town and is confident of a good result in that district battle.
Meanwhile, it is in the capital of George Town where the Elections Office will be spending the bulk of its paper and printing budget on ballot papers, which could be extremely lengthy. With the UDP and PPM running six people each, as well as the three coalition candidates who have already declared, the capital could see a record number of would-be politicians entering the political fray. So far however, the interim government group has given no indications of its intention to fight any of the seats, making the group members’ chances of returning to the front benches of parliament unlikely.
Ezzard Miller is expected to run unopposed in North Side in the single member constituency, while in the neighbouring district of East End his independent colleague Arden McLean will likely be in a head to head battle with John McLean Jr, who is supported by the UDP but who may still run on an independent ticket.
In Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, although Moses Kirkconnell and Juliana O’Connor-Connolly are expected to be returned, it is likely that several other candidates will also be on the ballot sheet fighting for one of the two seats.
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