General elections were held in the Bahamas on 2 May 2007 for all 41 seats in the House of Assembly. At stake were the 41 seats in the House of Assembly which included one newly-created seat.
Members of the House of Assembly are elected from single-member constituencies using first-past-the-post voting. The majority party then selects the Prime Minister, who is appointed by the Governor-General.
A total of three parties contested the election. The election was however mainly a contest between the two major parties: the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) and the opposition Free National Movement (FNM). There were 111 candidates in the election.
Background & Campaign
In the last elections held in 2002 the PLP had a sizeable victory taking 29 of 40 seats while the FNM took seven losing 27. The remainder went to independent candidates.
The main issues in the 2007 elections which were contested by 111 candidates were the economy foreign investment and immigration policy.
Prime Minister Perry Christie of the PLP who was seeking a second consecutive term in office called on voters to support his government's economic record which he claimed had attracted 20 billion dollars of foreign investment. The FNM was led by Mr. Hubert Ingraham who had been Prime Minister from 1992 to 2002. It argued that the government had done too much to accommodate investors and insisted the country's land should be leased rather than sold to foreign investors.
The ruling PLP had been under severe criticism due to several scandals including the residency application of American model Anna Nicole Smith who lived in the Bahamas until her death in the US in February 2007. The Immigration Minister had been forced to resign after being accused of having fast-tracked Smith's resident permit.
The result was an opposition victory, with the Free National Movement, led by former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham, claiming 23 of the 41 seats. Christie became the first Bahamian Prime Minister to be ousted after only one term in office.
On 4 May Mr. Ingraham was sworn in as Prime Minister.
On 23 May the newly elected House of Assembly held its first session together with the Senate. The Senate comprises 16 appointed members but was convened with three vacant seats due to a row over the allocation of these three seats (see note). On the same day Mr. Alvin Smith (FNM) was appointed Speaker of the House of Assembly. On 24 May Ms. Lynn Holowesko was appointed Senate President.
Voter turnout was 92.11%.