174,000 are registered
JAYME C. PINDER
Guardian Staff Reporter
Published: Apr 19, 2017
After getting off to an extremely sluggish start, the number of registered voters for the 2017 general election has surpassed the number of voters registered in the 2012 contest, but not by much.
Parliamentary Registration Department officials confirmed that as of April 17, 174,070 people registered to vote in the 2017 election, in comparison to the 172,128 registered voters in the 2012 general election, an increase of just over one percent.
Parliamentary Commissioner Sherlyn Hall told The Nassau Guardian yesterday that while the latest number definitely surpasses the last number, there’s still some fine tuning to take place.
“I don’t have the final figures for you because we are still cleaning up the register,” Hall said.
“But we have passed the 172,128 that we had in 2012.”
The department posted the current figures on its Facebook page.
The current figures also revealed that Golden Isles had the highest number of registered voters.
Some 6,420 people registered to date; nearly 25 percent more than the 5,036 people registered last election.
In Central Grand Bahama, 6,371 people registered; 11 percent more than the 5,647 who registered last time.
In East Grand Bahama, 6,162 people registered, an increase of 19 percent.
Killarney had 6,161 registered voters, an increase of 19 percent.
Registration numbers actually dropped in some constituencies.
MICAL had the fewest number registered with 1,176; that represents a drop of nearly 15 percent. Or looked at another way, the drop in registration represents a far greater number than by which current MICAL MP V. Alfred Gray won his seat.
Cat Island, Rum Cay and San Salvador had 1,489 registered voters, nearly a seven percent drop.
Long Island had 1,645 registered voters, a drop of about 200 people.
North Eleuthera saw a drop in registered voters to 3,077, while Central and South Eleuthera saw an uptick of nearly 20 percent to 3,533, both scenarios likely chiefly due to boundary cuts.
Southern Shores, South Beach, Seabreeze, Pinewood, Fox Hill, Carmichael and Tall Pines all saw increases in voter registration.
Hall said he will make the final figures available to the public at a later date.
The department is still working to clean up the register.
After reviewing a portion of the voter register earlier this month, The Guardian revealed that hundreds of discrepancies exist including the names of hundreds of people appearing twice on the register.
The register also showed some voter’s dates of birth as being in the 1700s and 1800s. Some people appeared on the register as being born this year.
Hall and his department came under heavy criticism for the discrepancies which he called “human error”. In some instances, he blamed registrants.
According to Article 25(2) of the Parliamentary Elections Act, the parliamentary commissioner shall within 14 days of the day of the issue of the writ of election publish the appropriate parts of the register in the Gazette.
That register is supposed to be the final register.
The department has until April 25 to clean up the register.
“The process is going very well,” Hall said.
“We’re cleaning it up and taking out all of the dead people.”
Hall said the Opposition is still heavily involved in the cleaning up process.