SOUTH Yorkshire’s new Police and Crime Commissioner said he was ‘thrilled and delighted’ to be elected - despite the turnout standing at less than 15 per cent.
Labour’s Shaun Wright will now be responsible for overseeing the police’s budget and priorities after winning the poll with 74,615 votes, giving him a clear majority.
But poll figures showed 93 per cent of the electorate either didn’t vote for Mr Wright, or failed to cast a vote at all.
Mr Wright said the result was a ‘fantastic day for South Yorkshire’ after he was officially declared commissioner - but hit out at the government for failing to provide enough information about the election.
“They didn’t publicise or fund them properly,” he said.
“Why would the public turn out and vote for a position that they didn’t know about? The turnout is very disappointing, but I take my mandate from the majority I received, not the turnout. “The jury’s still out on whether these positions will exist come another election, but I hope the public will judge me on my performance over the next three years.”
Of the other candidates, the English Democrats’ David Allen came second in the poll, garnering 22,608 votes. Nigel Bonson, representing the Conservative Party, came third with 21,075, with UKIP’s Jonathan Arnott fourth with 16,773 votes.
The Liberal Democrats’ Robert Teal came last with 10,223 votes.
South Yorkshire Police’s Chief Constable, David Crompton, said he was glad to have reached the end of the election campaign.
“This has been a long time coming, and in the past few months it’s created a degree of uncertainty for the force. I look forward to working with Shaun Wright as the new commissioner, and re-establishing some certainty as to what the future holds.
“It would have been nice if the turnout had been higher, but we need to make the system work now. The low turnout is for politicians to decide over.”