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Dominicans go to the polls today amidst unrest

- travel advisories issued
The protesters, mainly Unit­ed Work­ers Par­ty (UWP) supporters, have been demanding electoral reforms ahead of the polls in Dominica. Photo: Dominica News Online
The protests in Dominica, saw demonstrators blocking the two main roads with burning debris which lead to the Douglas-Charles Airport. People have also set up fiery roadblocks in the north-eastern constituency of Marigot which is represented by the opposition. Crew Center
The protests in Dominica, saw demonstrators blocking the two main roads with burning debris which lead to the Douglas-Charles Airport. People have also set up fiery roadblocks in the north-eastern constituency of Marigot which is represented by the opposition. Crew Center
Addressing the nation on Monday night, December 2, 2019, Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of Dominica, Roosevelt Skerrit, left, accused the opposition Leader Lennox I. Linton, right, and his United Workers Party (UWP) of encouraging the violence as part of its strategy to disrupt the election, calling an end to the lawlessness. Photo: Internet Sources
Addressing the nation on Monday night, December 2, 2019, Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of Dominica, Roosevelt Skerrit, left, accused the opposition Leader Lennox I. Linton, right, and his United Workers Party (UWP) of encouraging the violence as part of its strategy to disrupt the election, calling an end to the lawlessness. Photo: Internet Sources
ROSEAU, Dominica- Despite unrest by supporters of the Opposition, Dominica has gone ahead with general elections today, December 6, 2019.

Protests have tak­en the form of block­ing roads and burn­ing de­bris, and much of it is lim­it­ed to two key ar­eas—the Marig­ot and Sal­is­bury con­stituen­cies—which are strong­holds of the op­po­si­tion Unit­ed Work­ers Par­ty (UWP), according to reports out of the Commonwealth of Dominica.

Two persons were shot and injured by the police Thursday morning, December 5, 2019, in the village of Salisbury during attempts to quell demonstrations by some of the residents.

Both the US State De­part­ment and the Cana­di­an Gov­ern­ment have is­sued trav­el ad­vi­sories against the Com­mon­wealth of Do­mini­ca.

All cruise ship calls to the island have been cancelled for today.

Electoral reforms

The pro­test­ers have been de­mand­ing elec­toral re­forms ahead of the polls, including a clean-up of the voters' list, the issuing of voter ID cards and blocking Dominicans living abroad from voting.

Earlier this week, efforts by the UWP to have the elec­tions de­layed un­til Feb­ru­ary 5, 2020 were thrown out by the court.

According to Dominica News Online, the rea­son be­hind the rul­ing is that the Do­mini­can Con­sti­tu­tion does not al­low for any­one but the Prime Min­is­ter to set the elec­tion date, which is what the op­po­si­tion at­tempt­ed to do, the court not­ed.

While some have blamed the UWP, others have blamed Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit for failing to implement reforms despite recommendations made by a joint OAS, CARICOM and Commonwealth mission to the island.

Addressing the nation on Monday night, December 2, 2019, Prime Minister Skerrit accused the Opposition Leader Lennox I. Linton and his United Workers Party of encouraging the violence as part of its strategy to disrupt the election, calling an end to the lawlessness.

Just over 72,000 Do­mini­cans will be cast­ing their bal­lots today.

Virgin Islands News Online will be the first to bring you election results when they become available.

6 Responses to “Dominicans go to the polls today amidst unrest”

  • apple pie (06/12/2019, 10:24) Like (6) Dislike (6) Reply
    LETS GO UWP
  • harsh (06/12/2019, 13:21) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    Independence at its finest less than a generation later.....
  • Very soon (06/12/2019, 15:00) Like (3) Dislike (5) Reply

    This is going to happen in the BVI?

  • sACRE tONNE (06/12/2019, 15:03) Like (6) Dislike (2) Reply
    Skeritt will win haNDS DOWN.
  • Disinterested (06/12/2019, 16:35) Like (6) Dislike (2) Reply
    I’m not condoning the violence but from afar it seems as it the protesters have some reasonable requests/changes, eg, issuing identification cards, updating the voters list. Some people have out of the country for decades and not returning but still on the voters role. On this issue of citizens who live overseas voting, this is a ticklish issue. Migrating does not mean that one should give up their right to vote. Many people living overseas own property in the country, come back regularly, serve as goodwill ambassadors.....etc.

    Dominica has a fragile and weak economy so people must be cognizant that today’s action can cause long-term harm. The US and Canada issuing travel advisories and cruise line cancelling port of call, albeit just for today, is not helpful. Anyone remember Fountain Valley Golf Course in St. Croix in 1973? St. Croix still recovering. Put country first; this applies to both government and opposition.
  • Outsider (08/12/2019, 10:17) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    I have no respect for counties that sell Diplomatic Passports and Economic Citizenship. This is a recipe for corruption and influence peddling.


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