The Organization of American States (OAS) says it will send an Electoral Observation Mission (EOM) to the general elections in St. Vincent and the Grenadines on Dec. 9.
The Washington-based hemispheric body said this is according to the agreement signed on Monday by its representatives and that of the multi-island state.
OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro said the mission will be the 14th deployed in 2015 to various countries of the hemisphere.
He noted that the mission will focus on issues of electoral organization and gender equality, and respect for conditions of equality and transparency in the electoral competition.
Interim Representative of St Vincent and the Grenadines to the OAS, Omari Seitu Williams, welcomed the EOM to his country, adding that it will be the fifth mission that the OAS has deployed to the country after general elections in 2001, 2005 and 2010, and the 2009 Referendum on Constitutional reform.
The OAS said the mission will be led by the Chief of Staff of the Secretary General, Ambassador Jacinth Henry-Martin.
It will include observers from different nationalities who will be deployed in all 15 constituencies of the country before, during and after the electoral process, the OAS said.
Observers say the elections will be closely fought by the incumbent Unity Labor Party (ULP) of Prime Minister Dr. Ralph E. Gonsalves and the main opposition New Democratic Party (NDP) of economist and former Prime Minister Arnhim Eustace. Two other minor parties are contesting the elections.