Both the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and the People’s National Party (PNP) continue to claim victory in Monday’s Local Government Election, despite the official results from the Electoral Office indicating that they secured 7 mayoral positions each.
In the case of the PNP, the party says it was successful in Monday’s election, having secured victories in seven local authorities, up from five in 2016.
The PNP explains that local governance in the country is structured around fourteen (14) local authorities, comprising one city municipality in Portmore with a directly elected mayor, and 13 municipal corporations.
It says in a noteworthy achievement, it secured victories in seven (7) crucial local authorities, including the Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC), where a PNP councillor will now assume the role of mayor.
Additionally, the city municipality of Portmore, the only directly-voting mayorship in Jamaica, saw the return of a PNP mayor, while the party also secured mayoral positions in St. Catherine, Manchester, Westmoreland, Hanover, and St. Mary.
The party explains that it emerged as the frontrunner in the election by winning more divisions across Jamaica, securing 115 out of 228 divisions, up from 98 in 2016.
The party adds that it also won the popular vote across Jamaica, as it received 303,852 votes compared to the JLP’s 282, 534 votes.
Meanwhile, the JLP, which has also claimed victory in the polls, has expressed concern over the PNP’s response to the results, and has condemned what it describes as the opposition’s attempts to obfuscate the election’s outcome.
The JLP said it views the rejection of the official results as a threat to Jamaica’s democratic integrity.
The party accused the PNP of undermining the EOJ and eroding public confidence in them by disseminating false information and misleading graphics on social media, which suggest a PNP victory.
The concerns from the JLP were echoed by its youth arm, Young Jamaica,
President Rohan Walsh called on the PNP to remove what he described as fallacious posts being circulated on social media.
The posts in question state that the PNP won the popular vote and the majority of divisions in the local government election.