British Virgin Islands general election, 1999

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British Virgin Islands general election, 1999
British Virgin Islands
1995 ←
May 17, 1999 (1999-05-17)
→ 2003

All seats in the British Virgin Islands House of Assembly
7 seats needed for a majority
Turnout 65%
  First party Second party
  D. Orlando Smith (cropped).jpg Ralph T. O'Neal (cropped).jpg
Leader Orlando Smith Ralph T. O'Neal
Party National Democratic Party Virgin Islands Party
Leader since 1999 1995
Leader's seat At-large 9th District
Last election 0 seats, 0.0% 6 seats, 32.1%
Seats before 0 6
Seats won 5 7
Seat change +5 +1
Percentage 37.3%% 42.2%
Swing +37.3% +10.1%

Chief Minister before election

Ralph T. O'Neal
Virgin Islands Party

Elected Chief Minister

Ralph T. O'Neal
Virgin Islands Party

The British Virgin Islands general election, 1999 was held in the British Virgin Islands on 17 May 1999. The result was a victory for the incumbent Virgin Islands Party (VIP) led by Chief Minister Ralph T. O'Neal over the newly formed National Democratic Party (NDP) led by Orlando Smith.

The election was largely notable for three reasons:

  • It was the first election in the Territory since 1954 in which Lavity Stoutt, a dominant political force in the British Virgin Islands did not participate;
  • It marked the emergence of the NDP, the first serious opposition to the VIP since the collapse of the United Party in the aftermath of Cyril Romney's resignation as Chief Minister in 1986; and
  • It was the first election in the British Virgin Islands where no independent candidates were elected.[1]

Results[edit]

e • d Summary of the 17 May 1999 Br. Virgin Islands Legislative Council election results
Parties Votes % Seats
National Democratic Party   37.3 5
Virgin Islands Party   42.2 7
Concerned Citizens' Movement   4.0 1
Speaker and Attorney General 2
Total (turnout 65%)   15
Source: Electionguide.org

The election was largely decided in three key seats: the Third District (which Julian Fraser carried for the VIP by 26 votes), the Sixth District (which Omar Hodge carried for the VIP by 12 votes) and the Eighth District (which Lloyd Black carried for the NDP by 11 votes, with the crucial Penn family votes being split between Andre (running as an independent) and David (running for the VIP) - most years a member of the Penn family wins the Eighth District). The At-large seats were split equally between the two main parties. Ethelyn Smith won the Fifth District for the minority party, the Concerned Citizens Movement, where the second placed candidate was former Chief Minister running as an independent, Cyril Romney.

Although the overall vote count was flattering to the NDP this was because they polled well in the At-large seats (where each voter casts four votes). But most of the Territorial seats were not that competitive, with the VIP winning some seats with huge majorities, the largest being Alvin Christopher's thumping 80.2% of the vote in the Second District. Conversely, Julian Fraser won his seat in the Third District with the smallest mandate of any candidate - just 228 votes in a three way contest with a low voter turnout.

Notable candidates who were elected to the Legislature for the first time included future Chief Minister and Premier, Orlando Smith; future Deputy and Minister Kendrick Pickering; future Minister Andrew Fahie; and future Minister Julian Fraser. Conversely, Walwyn Brewley suffered the first electoral defeat of his career, and would thereafter choose to end his political career at this point.

Individual territorial seats[edit]

First Electoral District

Candidate Carrot Bay Zion Hill Total Percentage
Andrew FAHIE (VIP) 306 222 528 76.9%
Elvin STOUTT (IND) 101 40 141 20.5%
Rejected 15 1 16 2.3%
Spoiled 1 1 2 0.3%
Total number of registered voters: 1,140
Total number of votes cast: 687
Percentage of voters who voted: 60.2%

Second Electoral District

Candidate Jost Van Dyke Brewers Bay Cane Garden Bay Meyers Total Percentage
Alvin CHRISTOPHER (VIP) 74 85 165 160 484 80.2%
Enriquito RHYMER (NDP) 4 13 61 36 114 18.9%
Rejected 0 0 3 2 5 0.8%
Total number of registered voters: 1,023
Total number of votes cast: 603
Percentage of voters who voted: 58.9%

Third Electoral District

Candidates Sea Cows Bay Total Percentage
Julian FRASER (VIP) 228 228 38.4%
Michael THOMAS (NDP) 202 202 34.0%
Maxwell SMITH (UP) 148 148 24.9%
Rejected 14 14 2.4%
Spoiled 2 2 0.3%
Total number of registered voters: 914
Total number of votes cast: 594
Percentage of voters who voted: 65.0%

Fourth Electoral District

Candidates Road Town Salt Island Total Percentage
Mark VANTERPOOL (NDP) 451 2 453 62.2%
Walwyn BREWLEY (CCM) 254 4 258 35.4%
Gregory HODGE (UP) 22 0 22 3.0%
Rejected 14 0 14 1.9%
Spoiled 1 0 1 0.1%
Total number of registered voters: 1,091
Total number of votes cast: 728
Percentage of voters who voted: 66.7%

Fifth Electoral District

Candidates Huntum's Ghut Long Trench Total Percentage
Ethlyn SMITH (CCM) 208 70 278 37.9%
Cyril ROMNEY (IND) 182 51 233 31.8%
Hugo VANTERPOOL (VIP) 104 56 160 21.8%
Ulric SCATLIFFE (UP) 47 3 50 6.8%
Rejected 8 2 10 1.4%
Total number of registered voters: 1,202
Total number of votes cast: 733
Percentage of voters who voted: 61.0%

Sixth Electoral District

Candidates Baughers Bay Belle Vue Total Percentage
Omar HODGE (VIP) 316 51 367 45.4%
Elvis HARRIGAN (NDP) 289 66 355 43.9%
Edmund MADURO (UP) 67 4 71 8.8%
Rejected 13 3 16 2.0%
Total number of registered voters: 1,174
Total number of votes cast: 809
Percentage of voters who voted: 68.9%

Seventh Electoral District

Candidates Long Look Total Percentage
Kedrick PICKERING (NDP) 356 356 60.8%
Collingston GEORGE (UP) 109 109 18.6%
Birton LETTSOME (VIP) 107 107 18.3%
Rejected 13 13 2.2%
Spoiled 1 1 0.1%
Total number of registered voters: 812
Total number of votes cast: 586
Percentage of voters who voted: 72.2%

Eighth Electoral District

Candidates Hope Estate East End Total Percentage
Lloyd BLACK (NDP) 11 253 264 38.7%
Andre PENN (IND) 18 235 253 37.0%
David PENN (VIP) 10 148 158 23.1%
Rejected 0 8 8 1.2%
Total number of registered voters: 928
Total number of votes cast: 683
Percentage of voters who voted: 73.6%

Ninth Electoral District

Candidates The Valley North Sound Anegada Total Percentage
Ralph T. O'NEAL (VIP) 392 181 44 617 66.2%
Hubert O'NEAL (NDP) 202 53 45 300 32.2%
Rejected 12 1 1 14 1.5%
Total number of registered voters: 1,239
Total number of votes cast: 931
Percentage of voters who voted: 75.1%

At-large seats[edit]

Territorial At-Large Electoral District

Position Name Affiliation Total Percentage
1 SMITH, D. Orlando NDP 3,094 12.93%
2 GEORGE, Reeial VIP 3,015 12.60%
3 SKELTON, Ronnie NDP 2,675 11.18%
4 PARSONS, Eileene VIP 2,288 9.56%
5 WATTLEY, Paul NDP 1,897 7.93%
6 O'NEAL, Irene VIP 1,835 7.67%
7 PICKERING, Roy VIP 1,652 6.90%
8 CHRISTOPHER, Deloris NDP 1,460 6.10%
9 FRETT, Alred IND 1,457 6.09%
10 BLYDEN, Neil IND 919 3.84%
11 MADURO, Conrad UP 723 3.02%
12 FLAX, Keith IND 537 2.24%
13 HERBERT, Merritt UP 505 2.11%
14 MERCER, Charles UP 451 1.88%
15 DAWSON, Carl CCM 345 1.44%
16 FRETT, Betteto CCM 325 1.36%
17 O'NEAL, Edison UP 244 1.02%
18 SCATLIFFE, Fletcher IND 209 0.87%
19 BARONVILLE, Eileen IND 199 0.83%
20 LLOYD, Noel IND 97 0.41%
Total ballots cast: 6,145
Total rejected ballots: 76
Total votes rejected: 4
Total valid votes: 23,927
Total votes counted: 23,931
Total registered voters: 9,523
Percentage turnout: 64.53%

Footnotes[edit]