Oranjestad, St. Eustatius- A total of three parties will be competing for votes in the upcoming elections for a new Island Council on St. Eustatius.
On Monday September 7th, the Democratic Party (DP), the Progressive Labor Party (PLP) and the United People’s Coalition (UPC) all handed in their list for participation in the elections slated for October 21, 2020.
The DP list holds few surprises, other than the return of Julian Woodley as an active politician for the DP. During his tenure as acting Governor it was often said by the DP that Woodley had retired completely from politics. Little however is as changeable as a politician’s mind. The DP list will -once again- be led by Adelka Spanner, with Koos Sneek being second on the list.
Woodley comes in place four, after Ernie Simmons, but before Raquel Spanner-Carty, who occupies number five. While not very innovative, the DP list can be considered the most consistent.
The PLP has handed in a well-balanced list, which can probably also be described as the most innovative. Surprising on the list are the names of Reuben Merkman and Glenville Schmidt. Both politicians have the necessary experience in local politics and can be considered vote-getters on the island.
Merkman of course, was already a coalition partner of the PLP in the former Island Council, so his inclusion on the PLP slate is not a big surprise. Schmidt on the other hand was recently still toying with his idea for a “Blanc List” unifying politicians from different colors.
The PLP list will this time be led this time by Rechelline Leerdam, followed by Charles Woodley in second place. Former PLP leader Clyde van Putten still appears as number 11 on the list. Glenville Schmidt, Reuben Merkman and Derrick Simmons hold places three, four and five respectively.
The UPC today presented the shortest of the three lists, with only three names. Apart from Party leader Elvin Henriquez, Carmen Nova Bonilla and Daniela Richardson appear on UPC’s slate as the number two and three, respectively.
The island council elections of October 21, 2020 represent a gradual return to democracy on the island. The newly elected island council will initially only have limited powers. The island will, even after the October 21 elections, still be led by Kingdom Commissioner Marnix van Rij en deputy Kingdom Commissioner Alida Francis.
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