The ABC’s chief elections analyst Antony Green says NT Labor, led by Michael Gunner, will have the numbers to form a majority government now the party is expected to retain Arnhem and win the seat of Fong Lim.
- NT Labor will reach the 13 seats it needs to form a majority government
- The CLP Opposition has conceded defeat
- Labor is still in the running to win more seats as counting continues
The result ends almost three days of waiting for Territorians to learn the make-up of the next parliament, with Labor now returned to government with at least 13 seats out of the 25-seat NT Parliament.
In a statement, Mr Gunner said the Labor Party would return to power and govern “for all Territorians”.
“There are still votes to count in some close contests, but today I can tell you that Labor will form majority government in the Northern Territory for a second term,” he said.
“I do not see our victory as a reward, but as a renewal of our responsibilities to Territorians.
“I asked Territorians to stick with me and my team so we can stay the course and see this through.
“In backing Labor, you chose the future over the past. You chose stability and certainty. You chose strong and secure borders. You chose jobs, not cuts.”
Michael Gunner’s Labor has secured a majority on the third day of counting.(ABC News: Andie Smith)
The CLP Opposition has also conceded defeat.
Opposition Leader Lia Finocchiaro said she had called Mr Gunner to congratulate him on Labor’s election win
“I called Michael Gunner a short time ago to congratulate him and the Labor Party on winning the election and urged him to move immediately to take real action on the economy,” Ms Finocchiaro said.
Labor entered the day having won 11 seats and needing two more to secure majority government.
Earlier today Green called the electorate of Arnhem for Labor’s Education Minister Selena Uibo, then the seat of Fong Lim for Mark Monaghan, handing the Government its 13th seat.
Labor is also a strong chance to win more seats. It is currently ahead in close counts in the Palmerston seat of Blain, the vast Central Australian seat of Barkly and is narrowly leading in the redistributed seat of Namatjira.
Green said some of those counts would come down to the wire.
“[In] Blain, [Labor is] still ahead, but it’s far too close to call, only 20 votes,” he said.
Gunner ‘very confident’, but CLP refuses to concede defeat
The ABC has projected Labor will retain government in the Northern Territory, but it is not yet clear if the party will have a majority in the Legislative Assembly.
Green said while Labor might win the bush seat of Barkly, the election was won in the urban seats in Darwin
“Labor holds all nine seats in Darwin and it holds one of the four seats in Palmerston the twin city of Darwin. Labor has done well in holding all the seats,” he said.
“It’s been a patchy result. There was an election in Darwin and [an election in] the rest of the Territory, but Labor certainly held a strong grip on Darwin.”
In other close contests, the CLP leads in Braitling and Brennan, and Territory Alliance’s Robyn Lambley is ahead of the CLP’s Damien Ryan in Araluen by 20 votes.
Earlier on Monday afternoon, Green called the rural Darwin seat of Daly for CLP candidate Ian Sloan, who will succeed Garry Higgins, the retiring CLP member and former party leader.