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St Helena Online

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Christine wins by-election on a 19% turnout

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Christine Scipio-O’Dean has emerged as the clear winner of the by-election to choose a new legislative councillor on St Helena, following the resignation of Tara Thomas.

She becomes one of only two female councillors, alongside Bernice Olsson.

She polled 101 votes, more than the combined total for her opponents Eric George (54 votes) and Lionel Williams (30 votes) – both of whom are former councillors.

After the result was declared, she told Tony Leo of Saint FM she was “very tired”.

She said: “I am glad it is all over, and looking forward to the challenges ahead.

“I would just like to stick to my main principles, and that is to provide better educational opportunities, make sure the vulnerable are protected against the rapid increases were are seeing [in the cost of living], and enhance the partnership between government, civil society and the private sector.

“I would like to thank the people in the east who have given up their valuable time to vote today, despite bad weather. I would also like to thank people on the west for their kind encouragement.

“I look forward to working with my new colleagues for a short period – a very difficult period. Tough decisions will have to be made to ensure a better life for St Helena.”

Eric George said he was “disappointed, obviously, but the best man wins – best woman in this case. She did a good job by the look of it and she came out on top.”

Asked whether he would stand in the 2013 general election, he said: “I will see how my health is.”

Lionel Williams said: “Everybody is disappointed in the turnout. The weather isn’t all that good outside for election day.”

Voter apathy on St Helena: ‘There’s something seriously wrong’

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