Incumbents dominate election

March 17, 2005

The Kaselehlie Press

A clear picture of the results of the March 8 election became clearer this week, although not all FSM states had certified their results Tuesday. It appears that the three proposed constitutional amendments will not gain the 75 percent of votes in three of the four states necessary to pass. Successful candidates are also starting to emerge from the various two-year term congressional elections.

While results from Pohnpei and Yap have been certified, it is important to note that the results listed in this article from Chuuk and Kosrae have not and remained unofficial statistics at press time. In Chuuk, three election boxes; from districts one, four, and five; were being recounted when this article was written.

The amendment to Article III, Section 3, dealing with dual citizenship, was approved by 59% of voters in Yap, 65% in Pohnpei, 73% in Kosrae, and 77% in Chuuk. The amendment to Section 6 Article XI, which refers to diversity, was approved by 63% of voters in Yap, 70% in Pohnpei, and 73% in both Chuuk and Kosrae. The amendment to Section 8, Article XIII, the full faith initiative, garnered 66% approval in Yap, 69% in Pohnpei, 73% in Chuuk, and 77% in Kosrae.

National Election Office Director Bernell Edward said each ballot initiative would have to be approved by three-quarters of voters in at least three of the four FSM states.

In Pohnpei, unopposed candidates Dohsis Halbert and Peter Christian both retained their seats. Dohsis gained 88% of the vote in district one while Christian gained 90% in district three. Dion Neth received 58% of the vote in district two. Other candidates in district two were Ponsper Rosario Martin who received 3% of the vote and Herman Semes who received 39%.

In Yap, Isaac Figir won the only congressional election with 79% of the vote. Fidelis Thiyer received the remaining 21% of the vote.

In Kosrae, Claude Phillip gained more votes than his closest competitor Benjamin Patterson but did not receive a majority vote with 43% of the vote. This will require a run-off election in Kosrae to determine a winner between the two. Steven Linus George received 22% of the vote in the election.

In Chuuk, the district one election will require a run-off election if the current figures prove accurate. Henry Asugar and Peter Sitan each received beneath 50% of the vote in a race that was separated by only 75 votes. Lande Simor received nine percent of the vote.

In district two, Roosevelt Kansou and Tesime Kofot will have a run-off election to determine the winner of another split race. Anna Mijares received 22% of the vote and Manekis Manny Sonis received 15%.

Sapino Asor squeaked out a victory over Simiram Sipenuk in district three. Asor garnered only 12 votes more than Sipenuk, but that was enough to give him a victorious 50.09% of the vote, according to unofficial results from Chuuk.

In a similar neck-and-neck race, Willie Williander gained only 16 more votes than his opponent Tiwiter Aritos. Once again, that was enough to provide Williander with 50.23% of the vote in district four.

Another run-off will be required in district five if the unofficial results provided for Chuuk prove to be accurate. Moses Andrew Nelson gained 41% of the vote while Christlib Masachiro and Adanasio Smith gained 32% and 27%, respectively.