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Trinidad Express / VOTING has begun in the Local Government election. The polls opened at 6a.m. and more than a million citizens have the option of casting ballots.

There are 137 electoral districts in the fourteen corporations in Trinidad, and the outcome of the vote will likely influence the political future of several political parties.

The Peoples National Movement (UNC), which goes into the election controlling eight of the 14 corporations, is seeking to expand its power ahead of planned local government reforms which will place more responsibility in the councillors.

The PNM is the only party contesting all 137 seats.

The United National Congress (UNC), which has 135 eligible candidates today, considers the election a referendum on the PNM’s first year in office, and a good outcome will be interpreted as a political resurgence.

The Movement for Social Justice is fielding eleven candidates, the Congress of the People has nine, and the Independent Liberal Party, which won two seats in the last local government election, has fielded seven candidates in the Chaguanas Borough Corporation.

The National Democrats has three candidates vying for seats in the Port of Spain City Corporation and nine candidates have been fielded by the National Solidarity Assembly (NSA), a party formed through the All Trinidad General Workers Union.

There are four independent candidates in the race, among them Victor Roberts, who was shot while campaigning in Santa Flora on Saturday.

Polls close at 6p.m. There are 1,060,863 voters.

NOTE: The Multimedia team will be bringing readers election updates throughout the day.

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