5 Dec 2003

Marshall Islands result confirm UDP dominance

5:11 pm on 5 December 2003

Final unofficial election results in the Marshall Islands show that voters have returned President Kessai Note's United Democratic Party for a second four-year term.

The results, following the counting of off-shore postal ballots, indicate that Mr Note will have a 20-member majority in the 33-seat parliament.

Most of the two and a half thousand postal absentee votes from Marshall Islanders living in the United States went to the opposition party, Ailin Kein Ad, meaning Our Islands.

The postals only changed the domestic voter preference in one race at Ailinglaplap Atoll by putting incumbent Ailin Kein Ad Senator Christopher Loeak back into the lead by eight votes.

There will be at least seven new faces when parliament convenes early January, a 21 per cent turnover.