The Cayman Islands elections “amply met the international standard” for democratic and transparent elections, according to a group of six Commonwealth observers who have been reviewing the voting process this week.
“The results truly do reflect the will of the people,” said Steve Rodan, the head of mission for the Commonwealth observers. “Cayman can feel confident in its processes … whether or not they are pleased with the results.”
The six observers spent the week in Cayman checking everything from elections advertising, to news coverage, to ballot counting and voter registration.
Mr. Rodan, who is president of Tynwald in the Isle of Man, said legal principles of freedom of expression, freedom of movement and freedom of assembly were all respected.
He also commended the elections office staff and Supervisor Wesley Howell for their “meticulous attention to detail.”
Equality of voting principles were met by the adoption of the “one man, one vote” procedure during the 2017 general election, according to elections observers.
However, Mr. Rodan did note that two voting districts on Grand Cayman “depart from the norm” when it comes to the size of the voting districts.
The districts of East End and North Side, both with about 700 voters apiece, are significantly smaller than 1,186 average voters in the remainder of Grand Cayman’s other 15 voting districts.
There were a few other governance-related issues raised by the elections observers in their preliminary report on the Cayman Islands’ elections. These included unfair requirements for voters and candidates’ residence in the Cayman Islands prior to an election being held, and some concern about the state of campaign finance reporting prior to elections.