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Barbados Prime Minister praises ruling party victory | Election Issues

Mia Mottley’s Labor Party won all 30 seats in Barbados’ first vote as a republic, with the first results showing.

The Prime Minister of Barbados Mia Mottley has praised her victory in the Caribbean first general election since the country became a Republic last year, with the results showing that her party has won all the seats in the country’s parliament.

Mottley in December called for a decision on January 19, saying it would help strengthen cooperation as the island nation struggles with the coronavirus epidemic, which has devastated the economy of tourists.

Preliminary results released Thursday showed that the Mottley Barbados Labor Party (BLP) had secured all 30 seats in the House of Assembly, the lower house of parliament on the island.

“We stand today on the morning of January 20 with the confidence that people will speak with one voice – with conviction, consistency and clarity,” Mottley told a delighted crowd at BLP headquarters.

The victory has given Mottley, the country’s first female leader, a five-year prime minister. Several 16 seats were needed to win, and Mottley did the same when his party won the 2018 election.

“We would like to thank each and every one of the people of Barbados for the confidence that they continue to be in us,” he said in a statement, which was broadcast online.

The vote came after Barbados became legal republic at the end of November, to replace the British monarch and overthrow his colonial powers almost 400 years after the first English ships arrived on the island.

The former British nation chose Sandra Mason as her own first presidentand he changed Queen Elizabeth II as the leader of the country.

Barbados is facing an economic crisis in the future, including the reconstruction of its tourist economy. Mottley has promised to focus on finance, food, renewable energy projects and housing.

Dancers sing at the inaugural ceremony in Bridgetown, Barbados, last year, marking the birth of the new world. [File: Jonathan Brady/Pool via Reuters]

He added that Barbados, an island of more than 300,000 people who reported more than 37,000 cases of COVID-19, is still struggling to cope with the devastating effects of tourism.

“We have done well as a nation, but we have not yet left the forest,” he swore.

Mottley said he announced his cabinet Monday and declined to share details of the upcoming change in government.

Leaders from across the region praised the election results, including Carla Natalie Barnett, secretary general of the Caribbean Community, a 15-member business group, who praised Mottley for his “great achievements”.

Mottley’s main rival, Verla De Peiza of the Democratic Labor Party, conceded defeat.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken also thanked Mottley for his victory. “We hope to expand our partnership with the Prime Minister [Mottley] with his leadership, ”Blinken wrote on Twitter.

Mottley’s call for a quick vote has lifted the election by nearly a year and a half since mid-2023.

Opposition groups called for Mottley’s resignation at a time when some people were infected with the coronavirus and could not leave their homes.

“We have lost our democracy unwillingly,” De Peiza told local media, calling voters “disappointed”. “It was a reckless time to call elections,” he said.

More than 266,000 people were eligible to vote and the initial polls show that 50 percent participated.

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