With all the hype, dagger advertisements and euphoria that preceded the election, I wasn't going to miss the results; I was glued to my television set from quite early.
As they reeled of the votes- as they come in, I penciled the results constituency by constituency on my own paper.
The final results did not come in by 9:00pm as the director of elections (Danville Walker) predicted, but by 9:00pm the counts were coming in fast and furious.
It remained a close contest until at 27-26 (PNP vs. JLP) seats, the publishing noticeably paused.
They were apparently making sure that the remaining boxes were pin-point accurate. After a while, Mr. Danville Walker, interviewed by Dahlia Harris, emerged from his office and announced that the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) had won 31 of the 60 parliamentary seats, compared to the People's National Party (PNP) 29.
The Bruce Golding-led Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) defied the prophets to eke out its first general election win in 18 years.
But the close victory triggered immediate controversy, as Prime Minister and PNP President Ms Portia Simpson Miller refused to concede, stating that "the election is too close to call" and added that "As of now, we're conceding no victory to the Jamaica Labour Party". She went on to say cite intimidation, voting irregularities, violence, as well as ineligibility of some of the JLP candidates in the election.
Some political analysts then described her speech and stance then as 'un-prime ministerial'.
Most, if not all the public opinion polls, in the weeks and days leading up to yesterday's election, predicted a close election but gave the edge to the JLP.
Golding, in his victory speech, said that "however perplexing some may find the results; the fact is that the people have spoken".
In a commendable speech that needed to calm anxiety and tension, Mr. Golding added that "It may very well be that the people of Jamaica, in their own profound wisdom, are sending a clear message to all of us that the time has come for constructive engagement among the political forces of the country"; clearly relating to the closeness of the polls.
After the final counting, the JLP ended with 33 seats compared to the PNP's 27.
This election was Jamaica's 15th general elections since Universal Adult Suffrage in 1944. The count stood at seven wins for the JLP and eight for the PNP.
Despite some Election Day glitches, intimidation, as well as an anticlimactic finish, the 2007 election in Jamaica will be recorded as one of the best run in the history of the country. Thanks to an improved electoral system!
The following is a table of the popular votes
Party Votes JLP 405215 NDM 540 PNP 402275 UPP 0 IEWFIPP 0 IND 207 REP 0 JAM 3 JBF 0
Here also are other pages about Jamaica, that may interest you:
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