2020 Jamaican general election
General elections were held in Jamaica on Thursday, 3 September 2020 to elect 63 members of Parliament. As the constitution stipulates a five-year parliamentary term, the next elections were not expected until between 25 February and 10 June 2021. However, Prime Minister Andrew Holness called early elections to ensure a united response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. On the advice of Holness, Governor General Patrick Allen dissolved Parliament on 13 August 2020.
All 63 seats in the Jamaica House of Representatives
32 seats needed for a majority
|Turnout||37.85% ( 10.52pp)|
Map of result by constituency. All constituencies are numbered, with labels at the bottom.
The result was a landslide victory for the ruling Jamaica Labour Party, which received 57% of the vote and won 49 seats; the People's National Party remained the opposition party, losing 16 seats. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2019–2020 dengue fever epidemic, voter turnout was only 37%, the lowest in an election since 1983.
Prior to the election, the Jamaica Labour Party, led by Prime Minister Andrew Holness, formed a majority government. The largest opposition party was the People's National Party, led by Peter Phillips. Either the Jamaica Labour Party or the People's National Party have been in power since universal suffrage was introduced in 1944.
The 63 members of the House of Representatives are elected in single-member constituencies by first-past-the-post voting. Voters must be 18 years and over and be a citizen of Jamaica or a Commonwealth citizen.
The leader of the party commanding a majority of support in the House of Representatives is called on by the Governor General to form a government as Prime Minister, while the leader of the largest group or coalition not in government becomes the Leader of the Opposition.
Only two parties registered to contest the election, the Jamaica Labour Party and the People's National Party, and each nominated candidates in all 63 constituencies. The two parties agreed to participate in three televised debates hosted by the Jamaica Debates Commission.
|Last election||At dissolution||Contested|
|Jamaica Labour Party||Centre-right||Nationalism
32 / 63 (51%)
34 / 63 (54%)
|People's National Party||Centre-left||Social democracy
31 / 63 (49%)
29 / 63 (46%)
Slogans and songsEdit
|JLP||"Build back stronger."|
|PNP||"Building your Jamaica."|
Incumbent MPs not seeking re-electionEdit
Seven members of parliament did not stand for re-election:
|Retiring incumbent||Electoral District||Term in office||Reason||Date announced||Replaced as MP by|
|Robert Pickersgill||PNP||Saint Catherine North Western||1989-2020||Not standing||22 August 2017||Hugh Graham|
|Evon Redman||PNP||Saint Elizabeth North Eastern||2016–2020||Not standing||10 May 2018||Delroy Slowley|
|Derrick Kellier||PNP||Saint James Southern||1987–2020||Not standing||28 May 2018||Homer Davis|
|Ronald Thwaites||PNP||Kingston Central||1997–2020||Not standing||22 May 2019||Donovan Williams|
|Noel Arscott||PNP||Clarendon South Western||2007–2020||Not standing||14 September 2019||Luthon Cousins|
|Shahine Robinson||JLP||Saint Ann North Eastern||2001–2020||Died in office||29 May 2020||Marsha Smith|
|Leslie Campbell||JLP||Saint Catherine North Eastern||2016–2020||Not standing||26 June 2020||Kerensia Morrison|
Candidate nominations were finalised on nomination day, 18 August 2020. The full candidate list is presented below, along with the incumbent candidates before the election. MPs who are not standing for re-election are marked (†). Government ministers are in bold, and party leaders are in italics.
|Clarendon Central||Michael Henry||Zuleika Jess||Michael Henry|
|Clarendon North Central||Robert Nesta Morgan||Desmond Brennan||Pearnel Charles|
|Clarendon North Western||Phillip Henriquez||Richard Azan||Merrick Cohen (Ind.)||Richard Azan|
|Clarendon Northern||Dwight Sibblies||Horace Dalley||Horace Dalley|
|Clarendon South Eastern||Pearnel Charles Jr||Patricia Duncan Sutherland||Pearnel Charles Jr|
|Clarendon South Western||Kent Gammon||Luthon Cousins||† Noel Arscott|
|Hanover Eastern||Dave Brown||Wavell Hinds||Dave Brown|
|Hanover Western||Tamika Davis||Ian Hayles||Ian Hayles|
|Kingston Central||Donovan Williams||Imani Duncan-Price||† Ronald Thwaites|
|Kingston East & Port Royal||Egwugwu Priestly||Phillip Paulwell||Phillip Paulwell|
|Kingston Western||Desmond McKenzie||Joseph Witter||Desmond McKenzie|
|Manchester Central||Rhoda Moy Crawford||Peter Bunting||Rohan Chung (Ind.)||Peter Bunting|
|Manchester North Eastern||Audley Shaw||Donald Jackson||Audley Shaw|
|Manchester North Western||Damion Young||Mikael Phillips||Mikael Phillips|
|Manchester Southern||Robert Chin||Michael Stewart||Michael Stewart|
|Portland Eastern||Ann-Marie Vaz||Bishop Purcell Jackson||Ann-Marie Vaz|
|Portland Western||Daryl Vaz||Valerie Neita Robertson||Daryl Vaz|
|Saint Andrew East Central||Jodian Myrie||Peter Phillips||Peter Phillips|
|Saint Andrew East Rural||Juliet Holness||Joan Gordon-Webley||Juliet Holness|
|Saint Andrew Eastern||Fayval Williams||Venesha Phillips||Fayval Williams|
|Saint Andrew North Central||Karl Samuda||O'Neil Lynch||Karl Samuda|
|Saint Andrew North Eastern||Delroy Chuck||David Tulloch||Delroy Chuck|
|Saint Andrew North Western||Nigel Clarke||Rohan Banks||Nigel Clarke|
|Saint Andrew South Eastern||Kari Douglas||Julian Robinson||Julian Robinson|
|Saint Andrew South Western||Moureen Lorne||Angela Brown-Burke||Angela Brown-Burke|
|Saint Andrew Southern||Victor Hyde||Mark Golding||Mark Golding|
|Saint Andrew West Central||Andrew Holness||Patrick Roberts||Andrew Holness|
|Saint Andrew West Rural||Juliet Cuthbert-Flynn||Krystal Tomlinson||Juliet Cuthbert-Flynn|
|Saint Andrew Western||Dorlan Francis||Anthony Hylton||Anthony Hylton|
|Saint Ann North Eastern||Marsha Smith||Keith Brown||Vacant|
|Saint Ann North Western||Krystal Lee||Dayton Campbell||Peter Shand (Ind.)||Dayton Campbell|
|Saint Ann South Eastern||Delroy Granston||Lisa Hanna||Lisa Hanna|
|Saint Ann South Western||Zavia Mayne||Valenton Wint||Zavia Mayne|
|Saint Catherine Central||Olivia Grange||Maurice Westney||Olivia Grange|
|Saint Catherine East Central||Alando Terrelonge||Raymond Pryce||Alando Terrelonge|
|Saint Catherine Eastern||Dwight Pecoo||Denise Daley||Denise Daley|
|Saint Catherine North Central||Natalie Campbell Rodriques||Natalie Neita-Headley||John Henry (Ind.)
Lloyd Smith (Ind.)
|Saint Catherine North Eastern||Kerensia Morrison||Oswest Senior-Smith||† Leslie Campbell|
|Saint Catherine North Western||Newton Amos||Hugh Graham||Gene Guthrie (Ind.)||† Robert Pickersgill|
|Saint Catherine South Central||Andrew Wheatley||Kurt Matthews||Andrew Wheatley|
|Saint Catherine South Eastern||Robert Miller||Colin Fagan||Colin Fagan|
|Saint Catherine South Western||Everald Warmington||Kurt Waul||Upton Blake (Ind.)||Everald Warmington|
|Saint Catherine Southern||Delroy Dobney||Fitz Jackson||Fitz Jackson|
|Saint Catherine West Central||Christopher Tufton||Kenyama Brown||Christopher Tufton|
|Saint Elizabeth North Eastern||Delroy Slowley||Basil White||† Evon Redman|
|Saint Elizabeth North Western||William J.C. Hutchinson||Ryan Keating||William J.C. Hutchinson|
|Saint Elizabeth South Western||Floyd Green||Ewan Stephenson||Floyd Green|
|Saint Elizabeth South Eastern||Franklyn Witter||Dwaine Spencer||Franklyn Witter|
|Saint James Central||Heroy Clarke||Andre Hylton||Ras-Astor Black (Ind.)||Heroy Clarke|
|Saint James East Central||Edmund Bartlett||Michael Hemmings||Edmund Bartlett|
|Saint James North Western||Horace Chang||George Hamilton||Horace Chang|
|Saint James Southern||Homer Davis||Walton Small||† Derrick Kellier|
|Saint James West Central||Marlene Malahoo Forte||Andre Haughton||Marlene Malahoo Forte|
|Saint Mary Central||Lennon Richards||Morais Guy||Morais Guy|
|Saint Mary South Eastern||Norman Dunn||Shane Alexis||Norman Dunn|
|Saint Mary Western||Robert Montague||Jason Stanford||Robert Montague|
|Saint Thomas Eastern||Michelle Charles||Fenton Ferguson||Fenton Ferguson|
|Saint Thomas Western||James Robertson||Marsha Francis||James Robertson|
|Trelawny Northern||Tova Hamilton||Victor Wright Jnr||Genieve Dawkins (Ind.)||Victor Wright|
|Trelawny Southern||Marisa Dalrymple-Philibert||Lloyd Gillings||Richard Sharpe (Ind.)||Marisa Dalrymple-Philibert|
|Westmoreland Central||George Wright||Dwayne Vaz||Torraino Beckford (Ind.)
Don Foote (Ind.)[b 1]
|Westmoreland Eastern[b 2]||Daniel Lawrence||Luther Buchanan||Haile Mika'el (Ind.)||Luther Buchanan|
|Westmoreland Western||Morland Wilson||Wykeham McNeill||Wykeham McNeill|
The following lists identify and rank seats using the vote margin by which the party's candidate finished behind the winning candidate in the 2015 election. This vote margin is given as a percentage of all eligible voters in the district.
For information purposes only, seats that have changed hands through subsequent by elections have been noted. Seats whose members have changed party allegiance are ignored.
- Later gained by the JLP in a by-election on October 30, 2017, by a margin of 36.26% over the PNP.
- Later gained by the JLP in a by-election on April 4, 2019, by a margin of 1.62% over the PNP.
Don Anderson, CEO of Market Research Services Limited, Larren Peart, founder and CEO of Bluedot Data Intelligence Limited and Bill Johnson of Johnson's Survey Research Limited Inc have commissioned opinion polling for the general election regularly sampling the electorates' opinions.
|3 September 2020||2020 general election||–||57.1||42.8||0.1||14.3|
|21–24 August 2020||RJR Gleaner Group/Don Anderson poll||–||37||25||38||12|
|21–23 August 2020||Jamaica Observer/Bill Johnson poll||1,000||37||23||40||14|
|20 July–6 August 2020||Nationwide News Network/Bluedot poll||–||52||34||14||18|
|23 July–3 August 2020||RJR Gleaner Group/Don Anderson poll||–||36||20||44||16|
|9–12 July 2020||Jamaica Observer/Bill Johnson poll||1,200||36||17||47||19|
|13–20 June 2020||Mello TV/Bill Johnson poll||1,200||38||19||43||19|
|12–15 March 2020||Jamaica Observer/Bill Johnson poll||1,200||33||19||48||14|
|8–18 February 2020||RJR Gleaner Group/Don Anderson poll||1,038||30||22||48||8|
|2–19 December 2019||Nationwide News Network/Bluedot poll||–||56||44||0||12|
|7 August 2019||Don Anderson poll||–||35||30||35||5|
|2–4 August 2019||One PNP/Bill Johnson poll||1,000||34||32||34||2|
|28 March 2019||RJR Gleaner Group/Don Anderson poll||1,003||29||18||53||11|
|12 March 2018||RJR Gleaner Group/Don Anderson poll||–||26||19||55||6|
|25 February 2016||2016 general election||–||50.1||49.7||0.2||0.4|
CEAC Solutions pollingEdit
These polls are used internally by the PNP.
|3 September 2020||2020 general election||–||57.1||42.8||0.1||14.3|
|28-29 August 2020||CEAC Solutions poll||366||41||44||15||3|
|25 February 2016||2016 general election||–||50.1||49.7||0.2||0.4|
The ECJ reported that 97% of the polling stations had opened by 7:00 AM, and the remaining stations were open by 8:00 AM. The polls closed at 5:00 PM. Election observers included the EU delegation to Jamaica  and a domestic NGO, Citizens Action for Free and Fair Elections (CAFFE).
Before 10:00 PM, preliminary results indicated that the JLP had won 44 seats; for the first time since 1967, the JLP was re-elected while contesting all seats. PNP leader Phillips did not give a concession speech, but called Holness privately to offer congratulations. Phillips resigned as PNP leader on 4 September 2020. The full preliminary count indicated a total of 49 seats for the JLP. A tie in Westmoreland Eastern was declared to be won by the JLP after a recount.
PM Holness was sworn in for a new term by Governor-General Sir Patrick Allen on 7 September 2020. The ceremony, which was held at King's House, was restricted to 32 people to comply with public health measures.
|Jamaica Labour Party||408,376||57.07||+6.99||49||+17|
|People's National Party||305,950||42.76||–6.95||14||–17|
|Source: Electoral Commission of Jamaica|
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