Judge to rule on UNC election petition for Arima Northeast on November 28th

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Judge to rule on UNC election petition for Arima Northeast on November 28th

A decision will be given on November 28th in reference to the UNC petition against the Elections and Boundaries Commission, challenging the local government election results for the Arima Northeast district.

The EBC has assured that it will be transparent in the election petition.

Justice Frank Seepersad, who is presiding over the petition of the UNC’s candidate for the district, Jairzinho Domingo Gustav Rigsby, says he intends to give his decision on November 28th.

Seepersad stated that once the timeline is adhered to by the UNC and the EBC, he would deliver his final decision on that date.

Justice Seepersad: “That time must be taken in the context of dealing with the matter efficiently and effectively.” 

“The way I intend to manage this matter is to ensure that we have a determination as quickly as possible.”

The petition revolves around the EBC’s handling of a recount, and a subsequent review of queried ballots conducted after an initial count on election night (August 14) resulted in Rigsby and People’s National Movement (PNM) candidate Kim Garcia each receiving 623 votes. 

The recount took place on August 16 and resulted in Rigsby being declared the successful candidate having received an additional vote.

Garcia was eventually declared the winner after the review as two previously rejected ballots were reconsidered and ascribed to her. 

In the petition, Rigsby’s lawyer Arif Rahman took issue with the two ballots, which he contended should not have been deemed valid. 

The Arima Northeast election petition is the second challenge to the results brought by the Opposition United National Congress, the other being over the Lengua/Indian Walk district in Moruga.