17 May 2006

SDL wins Fiji election

7:03 am on 17 May 2006

Preliminary results in Fiji indicate that the SDL Party of Laisenia Qarase is set to win another five-year term.

Although final results are yet to be declared progress tallies carried on local radio show that the SDL is about to win a small majority with the backing of the two independents who won seats.

The SDL has secured the 23 Fijian communal seats and Mahenda Chaudhry's Fiji Labour Party won all 19 Indian seats.

With the support of the independents, the SDL needs to get 34 seats to have a majority in the 71-member parliament.

Several so-called Open seats still need to be declared and final results may not be ready before the afternoon.

If returned to power, Mr Qarase is obliged to offer the Labour Party cabinet seats in line with the constitution that gives every party winning ten percent of seats a right to be in cabinet.