Jamaica's leading opposition party PNP was poised for victory, with preliminary results showing it had won a majority of the 63 parliamentary seats at stake in national elections.
The left-leaning People's National Party has campaigned on Jamaicans' concerns about high unemployment, crime and corruption. The PNP is led by Portia Simpson Miller, who is seeking a return to the helm four years after narrowly losing her re-election bid.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness, at 39 the youngest person ever to lead the laid-back, palm-fringed former British colony of just under three million, saw his job put on the line in the closely-fought election.
His center-right Jamaica Labor Party has suffered from the government's fight against the extradition to the United States of Christopher 'Dudus' Coke, reportedly the former leader of the Shower Posse, a JLP-tied gang.
When authorities moved on some of Kingston's poorest and most crime-ridden areas in May 2010, a massive operation left 76 Jamaicans dead. The gang's link to the JLP has also hurt its sway in poor areas still traumatized by the incident.© ANP/AFP