Election: Thousands in Mid Ulster go to polls to choose six MLAs from 12 candidates

Mid Ulster Election 2016 - 12 candidates vying for six seats on May 5
Mid Ulster Election 2016 - 12 candidates vying for six seats on May 5

Thousands of people across Mid Ulster will go to polling stations across the region today [Thurs] to vote in the Assembly election.

Twelve candidates are vying for election in the constituency, which has been dominated by Sinn Fein in recent years.

The Republican party are standing three candidates in an effort to maintain their mandate.

Two candidates have been put forward by the DUP, while the SDLP, UUP, TUV, Alliance, Worker’s Party, Green Party and UKIP are all represented on the ballot paper, each with a single candidate.

Results are expected to come in on Friday, when the Mid Ulster votes are tallied in the Ballymena count centre.

The Mid Ulster Mail website will be providing up to the minute coverage from Ballymena on Friday, reporting the results as they happen and the reaction from the successful and unsuccessful candidates.

Five years ago, the Assembly election in Mid Ulster saw a turnout of just over 65 per cent from a total electorate of 66,602.

Martin McGuinness, who is not standing this time around, topped the poll in 2011 with almost 9,000 votes with the DUP’s Ian McCrea in second place.

Meanwhile, the charity for older people Age NI, is calling on candidates in the Mid Ulster constituency to #Act4Age and ensure that the issues that matter to older people are prioritised in the next Assembly.

“On May 5, voters in Northern Ireland will go to the polls to choose the MLAs who will represent them in the next Assembly,” said Linda Robinson, Age NI Chief Executive.

“We want Northern Ireland to be a great place to grow older and it is vital that once elected our MLAs #Act4Age on the issues that affect older people today and tomorrow.

“There are too many older people in NI struggling in poverty, too many older people not getting the support and care that they need, too many older people who encounter age discrimination every day.

“We want candidates in Mid Ulster to show their support for older people by becoming an Age Champion in the new NI Assembly and to work with us on the important issues that matters to older people.”