11 Jul 2014

Cook Islands PM may have lost seat

7:32 am on 11 July 2014

Preliminary results show that the Cook Islands Prime Minister, Henry Puna, may have lost his seat in the Manihiki electorate by two votes.

Cook Islanders went to the polls yesterday with fifty candidates from three parties and two independent candidates vying for the 24 seats in parliament.

According to the Cook Islands news, the preliminary results show Henry Puna with 64 votes, trailing the Democratic Party candidate, Tereapii Piho, on 66 votes.

Cook Islands Prime Minister, Henry Puna.

Cook Islands Prime Minister, Henry Puna. Photo: AFP / Marty Melville

Preliminary results also show Mr Puna's Cook Islands party having lost it's majority, winning 10 seats, with the Democratic Party winning 11 seats, the One Cook Islands Movement party winning two, and one seat tied.

The Henry Puna led government called a snap election in April, bringing the poll forward six months.

It claimed the early poll was needed to give the next parliament time to prepare for the fiftieth anniversary of self rule, but it had also lost its majority after the defection of two members.