NASSAU, Bahamas — The Electoral Observation Mission of the Organization of American States (OAS/EOM) congratulates the citizens of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas on their democratic commitment displayed during the advanced and overseas polls on September 9 and on election day, September 16.
The Mission, which was led by Dr Denis G. Antoine, comprised 18 experts from nine countries – four of whom worked virtually.
During its deployment, the Mission engaged in a substantive analysis of critical aspects of the electoral process and met with key stakeholders, including electoral and government authorities, political parties and candidates, civil society actors, the international community and other international electoral observers, to learn about the preparations for the process and to hear different perspectives on the elections. The Mission’s experts also analyzed relevant electoral legislation, regulations, processes and procedures to ensure a full understanding of the current context.
On election day, the members of the Mission were present in 32 constituencies across four islands of The Bahamas – New Providence, Grand Bahama, Abaco and Eleuthera – and observed the process from the opening of the polling stations to the tallying and transmission of preliminary results. Members of the Mission visited 184 polling stations in 53 polling divisions and found that the process was conducted in a well-organized and peaceful manner.
The Mission takes note that prime minister Hubert Minnis, political leader of the Free National Movement, conceded the election. His concession was accepted by the political leader of the Progressive Liberal Party, Phillip ‘Brave’ Davis.
A significant majority of women served as poll workers and political party representatives. The Mission applauds their work and commitment to supporting democracy in The Bahamas. The Mission also commends the electoral authorities, including all poll workers, the COVID ambassadors, and supervisory and security personnel, for their commitment and hard work on election day.
The findings of the Mission, along with recommendations in support of the further modernization of the electoral system and electoral processes in The Bahamas, are contained in the preliminary report presented here. A detailed report, which expands on the Mission’s observations and recommendations, will be presented to the OAS Permanent Council in Washington, DC and shared with all stakeholders in The Bahamas.
The Mission wishes to thank the government of The Bahamas, the parliamentary registration department, the ministry of foreign affairs, the stakeholders with whom it met, and all citizens, for their willingness to share their perspectives on the different aspects of the electoral process. These discussions contributed immensely to the successful completion of the Mission’s work.
The Mission is grateful to the governments of the Dominican Republic, Italy, Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, and the United States for their financial contributions which made this Mission possible.