Page last updated at 10:55 GMT, Thursday, 11 December 2008

Historic election recount ordered

Sark election count
The election result had been expected to be announced overnight

A recount is under way in the first election to choose a democratic government for the Channel Island of Sark for nearly 450 years.

Fifty-seven candidates are fighting for 28 seats in the Chief Pleas.

Voter turnout for Wednesday's poll was 87.3%, with the results expected to be announced overnight.

But the recount was ordered because several candidates vying for the final seat came within just a few votes of each other. A result is expected later.

The 87.3% turnout shows the will of the electorate
Lt Col Reg Guille, seneschal

Despite the recount, the island's seneschal (senior judge) Lt Col Reg Guille, who is also the returning officer, said the election had gone like "clockwork".

"The 87.3% turnout is hugely important because it shows the will of the electorate," he said.

"The three scrutineers did a superb job under pressure.

"The election was carried out in a very open, transparent and friendly atmosphere," he added.

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