Those who have started to speak out include members of the clergy and the latest comments have come from well known pastor of the Antioch Baptist Church, in St. Kitts, Mr. Lincoln Connor.
Connor used the occasion of one of the local radio talk shows on Friday, 15th July, 2011, to voice his objections to the actions that played out on Monday 11th July, when Nevisians went to the polls to elect a new five (5) member Island Assembly.
Pastor Connor said in his opening comments, “Concerning what took place in Nevis, from my point of view… I am extremely uncomfortable with the reality of individual names being removed from the voters list and their inability to exercise their franchise.”
He continued, “Having done a study on our history, I understand how important it is for people to exercise their right to vote.” He said that he held the view that the judge himself established precedence that if all the affected persons had filed affidavits, those names would have been reinstated.
The pastor was making reference to a ruling by a High Court judge, just days before the poll, that five of the persons who were affected and took legal actions, were in fact illegally removed from the list and that the required and proper procedures were not followed to delete such names. He therefore ordered the Supervisor of Elections to ensure that those names were returned to the list.
“I just want to say from my own personal perspective; speaking on my own behalf and absolutely no one else, that I have been very uncomfortable with what I’ve been hearing and I don’t think it speaks well for our people and I hope the situation can be rectified and it would be my prayer that we never see anything of this nature ever again taking place in our federation, because it cannot be right, it cannot be proper, and it cannot be balanced and I just felt, that for how I’ve been feeling for over these past days, that it would inappropriate for me not to actually express that concern, and again I speak on my own behalf, I speak from my conscience,” said Pastor Connor.
“I think that the politicians would know exactly what report they have, and I think that within their deliberations, they would decide what is the next necessary step for them to take, but I would say that whatever steps are taken, I hope they would be non-violent, that they be peaceful and I have all confidence that, that is going to be; to move forward in whatever step they take, would not be anything that would have any sort of devastating effect on the country, at this particular time.
Pastor Connor said for the past couple days he has been reminded of words once spoken by his uncle and the man he succeeded as head of the Antioch Baptist Church, (Pastor Connor-the senior), word to the effect that… evil would always prevail when good men standby and do nothing.
In the election, the Nevis Reformation Party, (NRP) was declared the winner of three seats, to the Concerned Citizens Movement’s, (CCM) two.
In one of the seats, contested by Deputy Premier Hensley Daniel (NRP), and Mark Brantley (CCM), in the Constituency of St. John, Daniel was declared the winner by 14 votes with 14 spoilt ballots. However, it was Brantley who led in the count by 116 votes before the final polling division was declared giving Daniel 235 votes compared Brantley’s 105.
The CCM leader, Vance Amory has announced that his party intends to mount a legal challenge to the results which they do not accept and acknowledge.