PELELIU STATE, PALAU HAS NEW GOVERNOR

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Kangichi Uchau certified winner of special election

By Philip N. Haruo

KOROR (Palau Horizon, Mar. 23, 2009) - The Palau Election Commission Board on March 17 certified and declared Kangichi Uchau to the Office of the Governor of Peleliu State.

The Office of the Governor of Peleliu State was vacated soon after then Governor Jackson Ngiraingas relinquished his duties as governor of the state as a prerequisite to assuming his responsibilities as Minister of Public Infrastructure, Industry, and Commerce last month.

Uchau and Johannes "Hanes" Tsuneo each filed nominating petitions to run for the Office of the Governor of the state in special election, which was held on March 12.

A little over a third of the registered voters of Peleliu (375 of 912) went to the polls during the special election and a majority of them voted to seat Uchau as Governor of Peleliu State.

Of the 375 votes cast, Uchau received 262, Tsuneo received 109, 1 was for a write-in candidate, 1 was blank, and 2 were voided.

Uchau will only serve as governor of the state for the remaining months of Ngiraingas’ term, which ends in November.

According to one registered voter, he contends that the results of the special election is not definitive of the people want to be governor for a longer term.

"A minority chose for a majority this time around," he said, "But that choice will definitely be changed in November as more of the registered would be casting their votes."

It is speculated that Uchau, Tsuneo, and possibly other candidates will run for the Office of the Governor of the state in November. Further, it is expected that more than two-thirds of the registered voters will cast their votes.

Uchau, in the meantime, is the Governor of Peleliu State for the next 7 months.

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