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From the Supervisor of Elections – Vol II No 9: Election Offences – Bribery

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

By: Supervisor of Elections

Office of the AG

Electoral Office

 
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HIGHLIGHTS

In the last two elections, eight election petitions were filed, with each one claiming violations of bribery
Bribery is committed by any person who gives or agrees to give any money or valuable consideration to / for any voter, to induce any voter to vote or refrain from voting
Also, bribery is done by any person who gives or agrees to give any office, place or employment to / for any voter to vote or refrain from voting
Any individual who makes such gift to/ for someone, the return of any person as an elected member of the National Assembly, or the vote of any voter at any election, also commits bribery
Any person who, upon or in consequence of any such gift promises the return of any person as an elected member of the National Assembly or the vote of any voter at any election is guilty of bribery

From the Supervisor of Elections
Vol II Issue No 9: Election Offences – Bribery

The election legislation allows for challenges – other than Objections to registration – under the section called Election Petitions. In the last two elections, eight such petitions were filed, with each one claiming violations of procedures but mostly about the commission of election offences, notably bribery. But what is bribery, according to the Act?

The Act says that bribery is committed by every person who, directly or indirectly, by himself or herself or by any other person on his or her behalf, gives, lends, or agrees to give or lend, or offers, promises, or promises to procure or to endeavour to procure any money or valuable consideration to or for any voter, or to or for any person on behalf of any voter, or to or for any other person in order to induce any voter to vote or refrain from voting, or corruptly does any such act as aforesaid on account of any voter having voted or refrained from voting at any election.

Also, bribery is done by every person who directly or indirectly, by himself or herself or by any other person on his or her behalf, gives or procures; or agrees to give or to procure, or offers, promises, or promises to procure or to endeavour to procure, any office, place or employment to or for any voter, or to or for any person on behalf of any voter, or to or for any other person in order to induce such voter to vote or refrain from voting, or corruptly does any such act as aforesaid on account of any voter having voted or refrained from voting at any election.

Any person who, directly or indirectly, by himself or herself or by any other person on his or her behalf, makes any such gift, loan, offer, promise, procurement or agreement as aforesaid to or for any person, in order to induce such person to procure, or endeavour to procure, the return of any person as an elected member of the National Assembly, or the vote of any voter at any election, also commits bribery.

In addition, any person who, upon or in consequence of any such gift, loan, offer, promise, procurement or agreement, procures or engages, promises or endeavours to procure the return of any person as an elected member of the National Assembly or the vote of any voter at any election is guilty of bribery.

åAdded to the above, every person who advances or pays or causes to be paid, any money to or to the use of any other person with the intent that such money, or any part thereof, shall be expended in bribery at any election, or who knowingly pays or causes to be paid any money to any person in discharge or repayment of any money wholly or in part expended in bribery at any such election.

Every voter who, before or during any election, directly or indirectly, by himself or herself or by any other person on his or her behalf, receives, agrees, or contracts for any money, gift, loan or valuable consideration, office, place, or employment for himself or herself or for any other person, for voting or agreeing to vote, or for refraining or agreeing to refrain from voting at any election is guilty of bribery.

Finally, any person who, after any election, directly or indirectly, by himself or herself or by any other person on his or her behalf, receives any money or valuable consideration on account of any person having voted or refrained from voting, or having induced any other person to vote or refrain from voting at any such election.

I have copied these definitions almost verbatim from the Act. If you are confused, I apologise. But this is the best I can do, as I do not engage in election offences. I am only interested in ensuring that each person gets one vote in the right place; thereby guaranteeing fairness to all.

It is the principal mission of the Office of the Attorney General to provide legal advice and services to and on behalf of The Crown, and to conduct and respond to all matters of litigation for and against The Crown or any Ministry or Agency of the Government.

Importantly, its mandate includes the extensive oversight of the legislative agenda of the Government.

The Office of the Attorney General also provides administrative support for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and superintends all matters relating to the Electoral Office.

Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs

The Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs ensures that the rule of law is facilitated and supported by the various mechanisms by which citizens can have equal access to the justice system and by which they can be afforded the protection of the law. It also takes responsibility for ensuring that the statutes are updated and modernized to keep pace with an evolving society.

Quick and convenient access to important and noteworthy matters relevant to entities under the Office of the Attorney General and departments within the Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs.

Hon. Mr. Vincent Byron
Attorney General

Ms. Diana Francis
Permanent Secretary

(Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs)

The Office of the Attorney General

The Office of the Attorney General is chiefly responsible for providing legal counsel and advice to the Executive Branch of the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis. The functioning of the Office is rooted in the Constitution and is further detailed by the provisions of the Attorney General’s Act Cap 3.02 of the laws of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis.

One of the more prolific manifestations of the advisory functions of the Office of the Attorney General is its contribution to the legislative agenda of the government. As such, the responsibility of preparation of all legislation: from conceptualization to the presentation of Bills and the crafting of Regulations falls within the purview of the office.

Get In Touch

Government Headquarters,
Church Street, Basseterre, St. Kitts

+1(869) 467-1013

attorneygeneral@gov.kn

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