NPA mayoral candidate Ken Sim apologized Monday for not conceding Saturday that he lost the race to become Vancouver’s mayor to Kennedy Stewart, who won by 984 votes.
“I apologize that it has taken time to acknowledge that Kennedy Stewart won the mayoral election,” he said in a statement issued by his party. “Given the close nature of the result, we believed that we owed it to our supporters and the city to ensure we had the correct result. This was not done to take away from Kennedy Stewart or his team’s accomplishment in any way.”
The 984 votes that separated Sim and Stewart were considered unofficial results Saturday. The city’s chief election officer, Rosemary Hagiwara, must certify the final election results by Oct. 24 at 4 p.m., according to the city Charter and election bylaw.
On Monday, the city announced that Hagiwara planned to “verify the results from the voting places where there is a discrepancy between the ballot accounts and the results produced by the vote counting machines.”
The city didn’t name the voting places, or say how many were in question, but said ballots from those polls will be fed into a vote counting machine at city hall. That process began at 10:30 a.m. Monday and was expected to continue into late Monday, possibly Tuesday morning.
All candidates and their representatives were free to attend the count at city hall.
Though the race to replace the retiring Mayor Gregor Robertson was tight, the race for the seven park board seats was even tighter, with the NPA’s Ann-Marie Copping missing the final spot by 250 votes. Others elected on council, school board and park board did so convincingly.
While Sim lost the race for mayor, five NPA council candidates were elected to the 10-member council. They will be joined by three members of the Greens, Jean Swanson from COPE and Christine Boyle of OneCity.
Stewart and the new council, including incumbents Melissa De Genova and Adriane Carr, will be sworn in Nov. 5.