Call for end of ‘none of the above’ voting

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ST Saviour’s new Constable, Kevin Lewis, has called for the ‘none of the above’ voting option to be scrapped before the next election.

The former Deputy was elected father of the parish last week with 1,552 votes – but faced strong competition from none of the above, which polled 1,046.

The option was available to voters when the number of candidates was lower, or equal to, the number of seats available.

Mr Lewis, who was the only candidate vying for the seat, said: ‘What I would like is, if the future Constables are nominated at least two months in advance, then if anyone is not happy, they are more than welcome to stand against them.’

Despite 39% of those casting ballots in St Saviour voting against him, Mr Lewis said he believed he could win over his detractors and he planned to dedicate himself wholly to the parish, having announced he would not seek or accept a position in the Council of Ministers.

‘I am a positive person and I am moving forward and looking forward to working with the great system we have in the parish hall,’ he said.

‘I want to have more events and look after parishioners.

‘There is a lot happening in the future. We are restarting the Jersey Film Festival next year. We have lots of meetings coming up and lots of committees being formed.’

His campaign for Constable got off to a late start, he added, as he was just about to announce he was standing when the much-loved former Constable Sadie Le Sueur-Rennard passed away in May.

‘I couldn’t really say anything until after Sadie’s funeral,’ he said.

Mr Lewis believes this combined with negative feelings in the electorate towards the government to hurt his campaign.

Having served as Infrastructure Minister may also have cost him support, he said.

‘It is called the poisoned chalice. I was accused of closing Broad Street when, in fact, I was the one who tried to open Broad Street but the States voted against it.

‘If the States voted on something I had to carry out the States’ wishes but people thought I could over-rule that when legally I could not.’

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