Senior electoral officer Sylvester King told the Elections Petitions Court Friday afternoon that he could not recall how the results of the December 9, 2015, election in Central Leeward flowed into the Electoral Office, even having signed a witness statement which said the results were among the last if not the last.
King was appearing as as witness in the trial of two petitions filed by New Democratic Party (NDP) candidates Lauron Baptiste and Benjamin Exeter who contested the North Windward and Central Leeward seats, respectively, in the December 9, 2015, elections and filed petitions on December 31st, same year, claiming irregularities.
During cross exam by Exeter’s lead counsel Stanley ‘Stalky’ John QC, King was asked about paragraph 15 of his witness statement. He acknowledged that some of the Central Leeward results came early as the results were announced the night of the general elections but most came close to the end of the announcement of the general elections results.
Asked about the order in which the Central Leeward results came, King said he could not recall.
Asked how he recalled that they were among the last results to be announced, King referenced the score sheet.
Asked about the timing of the results, based on the space between the early and later announcement of the results, he said “I don’t recall.”
Asked on what basis he was able to state what he stated at paragraph 15 of his witness statement, the senior electoral officer said “I really don’t know because different persons were recording these scores.”
The Queen’s Counsel put to King that he made the statement and he should know.
King simply replied, “Sir, as I indicated.
Pressed further, King added: “Sir, we had on that evening several persons who were taking the results.”
Asked if it was from his first-hand knowledge that he made the statement, King said he supervised the several persons.
Asked when the last results came in – whether before or after midnight – King said: “I am not sure, sir.”
Senior Counsel Douglas Mendes who is representing respondents in the trial, objected on the ground that King was speaking about results flowing into his office and not results flowing to Exeter which counsel John was referring to.
Mendes’ objection was upheld.
Asked by counsel John if he had any personal first-hand information, King said: I cannot recall, sir… As I said before, different persons were collating the information.”
King was the second person to testify for the respondents. The respondents started their case on Thursday with former supervisor of elections Sylvia Findlay-Scrubb taking the stand to give oral evidence.
The petitions hearing continues at the NIS building on Monday morning.