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Four elections were contested across the Caribbean region in 2018, three of which resulted in resounding mandates for the winning party. In both Grenada, the ruling Keith Mitchell led New National Party (NNP) won a second consecutive clean sweep of all 15 seats in the House of Representatives. In Barbados, the opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) pulled off a similar feat, with the Mia Mottley led party winning all 30 seats in the House of Assembly and Mottley become the first woman Prime Minister in the country's history. A snap election in Antigua and Barbuda resulted in a second consecutive term for the Gaston Browne led Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP) winning 15 of 17 seats in the House of Representatives. In the gubernatorial election in the United States Virgin Islands, democrat Albert Bryan denied Governor Kenneth Mapp (independent) a second term in office.

In addition to the general elections, there were referenda in Grenada and Antigua and Barbuda to make the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) the final court of appeal, replacing the British Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. Both referenda went down to defeat on 6 November 2018.

Rounding out the year, the opposition in Guyana successful brought a no-confidence motion against President David A. Granger’s APNU+AFC coalition government and triggering a general election campaign nearly two years before constitutional term is complete.

Here is a recap of the 2018 election year.

Grenada General Election – 13 March 2018
Grenadians went to the polls on 13 March 2018. Grenada Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell made the announcement at a mass rally at the National Stadium Car Park on Sunday, 28 January 2018. The Keith Mitchell led New National Party (NNP) was re-elected for a second successive term with a landslide victory over the Nazim Burk led National Democratic Congress (NDC). The NNP won all of the 15 seats. This was the third time the NNP won all 15 seats, doing the same in 1999. This represents Mitchell’s fifth non-consecutive term as leader of the NNP and prime minister of Grenada, going into his 24th year in office. Seven of the 15 members of the new House of Representatives were women. First time MPs Kindra Maturine Stewart, Kate Skeeter-Lewis, and Pamela Moses, will be joining returning MPs Clarice Modeste-Curwen, Emmalin Pierre, Yolande Bain-Horsford, and Delma Thomas.
Prime Minister Keith Mitchell being sworn in for a second consecutive term in office, 14 March 2018
Learn more about the 2018 Grenada General Election »
Antigua and Barbuda General Election – 21 March 2018

On 24 February 2018 Prime Minister Gaston Browne announced that Antigua and Barbuda would be going to the polls on 21 March 2018 to elect a new government. The election took place 15 months before it is constitutionally due in June 2019. The Antigua Barbuda Labour Party (ABLP) led by Prime Minister Gaston Browne has won the 2018 general elections, gaining one more seat in the parliament and will retain the government in Antigua and Barbuda.  Preliminary results indicate that the ABLP has won 15 of the 17 seats in the House of Representatives.  The opposition United Progressive Party (UPP), led by former Finance Minister Harold Lovell, has won 1 seat. The Joanne Massiah led Democratic National Alliance (DNA) failed to win any seats in the 2018 election.

Prime Minister Gaston Browne being sworn in for a second consecutive term in office, 22 March 2018
Learn more about the 2018 Antigua and Barbuda General Election »
Barbados General Election – 24 May 2018

The Barbados parliament automatically dissolved pursuant to the constitution on Monday, 5 March 2018 without Prime Minister Freundel Stuart announcing a date for general elections. On 26 April 2018, Prime Minister Stuart announced that elections would be held on Thursday, 24 May 2018 in a brief statement released by the Barbados Government Information Service. Nomination Day was set for Monday, 7 May 2018, The Barbados Labour Party (BLP) has won a resounding mandate from the electorate of Barbados winning all 30 of the seats in the Barbados House of Assembly following the 24 May 2018 General Election. The BLP, led by 52-year-old attorney and former Leader of the Opposition, Mia Mottley, will form the next government in Barbados with Ms. Mottley becoming Barbados’ eight Prime Minister and the first woman the hold the post.

BLP leader Mia Amor Mottley being sworn in as the 8th Prime Minister of Barbados by Governor-General Dame Sanda Mason, 25 May 2018
Learn more about the 2018 Barbados General Election »
United States Virgin Islands Gubernatorial Election – 18 July 2017

The 2018 U.S. Virgin Islands gubernatorial election took place on November 6, 2018 to select the Governor and Lieutenant Governor of the United States Virgin Islands who are chosen on the same ticket. The election was held concurrently with the 2018 United States midterm elections. As no candidate ticket received a majority of the General Election vote, the top two vote-getters proceeded to a runoff 14 days later on Tuesday, 20 November 018. Democrat Albert Bryan Jr. and his running mate, Sen. Tregenza Roach, won the runoff election.

Governor-elect of the United States Virgin IslandsAlbert Bryan Jr.
Learn more about the USVI Elections »
Grenada Constitutional Referendum – 6 November 2018

A constitutional referendum was held in Grenada on 6 November 2018. The proposed constitutional amendment, which voters ultimately rejected, would have made the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) the final court of appeal, replacing the British Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, and renamed the Supreme Court. A slightly different proposal was previously made in a 2016 referendum, but was also rejected by voters.

Voters were asked to respond YES or NO to the following question: Do you approve the Bill for an Act proposing to alter the constitution of Grenada cited as Constitution of Grenada (Caribbean Court of Justice and renaming of Supreme Court) (Amendment) Bill 2018?

No votes outstripped yeses by 12,133 to 9,846, on a turnout of 28%. Prime Minister Keith Mitchell, whose government had called the vote, said he was "disappointed" but that he was "in total acceptance of the results".

Antigua and Barbuda Constitutional Referendum – 6 November 2018

A constitutional referendum was held in Antigua and Barbuda on 6 November 2018, the first referendum in the country's history. The proposed constitutional amendment, which ultimately failed to pass, would have made the Caribbean Court of Justice the final court of appeal, replacing the London-based Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. A quorum of 66.6 % of the valid votes in favour was required for the amendment to be approved.

Voters were asked to respond YES or NO to the following question: Do you approve of the Constitution of Antigua and Barbuda (Amendment Bill 2018) which is a bill for an act to alter the Constitution of Antigua and Barbuda to terminate Her Majesty in Council (also known as the Privy Council) as the final Court of Appeal for Antigua and Barbuda and to replace it with the Caribbean Court of Justice (also known as the CCJ)?

The final vote tally gave totals of 8,509 for the amendment and 9,234 against. Turnout was 33.6% of the electorate.

Towards 2019

Notwithstanding the possibility of snap elections, there are six constitutionally due elections in 2019.

Country Head of Government Term Last Election Next Election
British Virgin Islands Premier Orlando SMITH

4 years

08 Jun 2015 Jun 2019
Dominica Prime Minister Roosevelt SKERRITT 5 years 08 Dec 2014 Dec 2019
Guyana President David GRANGER 5 years 11 May 2015 Mar 2019
Montserrat Premier Donaldson ROMEO 5 years 11 Sep 2014 Sep 2019
In Memoriam 2018
In memoriam 2018

A reflection on the lives of those Caribbean leaders we've lost in 2018.

View our In Memoriam 2018 feature »

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