Scores of Barbudans cheered and sang “Trevor Walker for Barbuda” as they chipped through the city last night to celebrate his election as the representative for the people of Barbuda.
This was the outcome of what was expected to be a closely contested seat in yesterday’s general election that ended with him receiving 558 votes and his main competitor, Arthur Nibbs, garnering 429 votes.
Walker represents the Barbuda People’s Movement, and this will be his third time in Parliament. Nibbs, who was the incumbent, is a member of the Antigua Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP).
A total of 1,165 people are registered to vote in Barbuda, and of that, 1,021 or 87.64 percent turned out to vote.
Some flew in, and scores travelled on the ferry as, this time around, Barbudans were required to vote on mainland Antigua for the first time in the country’s electoral history. The party Go Green For Life, represented by Primrose Thomas, secured 13 votes; independent candidate Ralph Francis got four votes and there were 17 rejected ballots.
Prior to the count, Walker expressed confidence of a win, while Nibbs was nowhere in sight when the voting process ended at 6 p.m.
The count started shortly after 7 p.m. inside the T.N. Kirnon Primary School while dozens of Barbudans sat outside the entrance, waiting to find out who had won.
Many of those who were there are currently residing in shelters or homes of friends or relatives who gave them shelter after hurricane Irma damaged a significant portion of the island’s infrastructure last September.
“Now that man who they call worl’ boss will see who is deracinated, his man is out,” one woman said, as she recalled words used by Gaston Browne, leader of the ABLP, to describe people who objected to the ABLP’s policies following the devastation caused by hurricane Irma in Barbuda last September.
“He will see none of us are imbeciles,” she added, before re-joining Barbudans in the chant through the street.
Walker won in all four ballot boxes which were counted at the T.N Kirnon Primary School, right where the Barbudans voted yesterday.