Assembly Election results

Follow all news with our team at each of the count centres

  • 5/6/2022 4:42:24 PM

    State of the Parties

    As of now Sinn Féin have had 12 MLAs elected, the DUP has had two, the Alliance party has had two, the UUP has one, and Independent Unionists Alex Easton (formerly DUP) has been elected in North Down. 
    Latest predictions are saying that Sinn Féin could end up with 29 seats of the 90 seats with the DUP at 25. That will mean that both parties will have taken almost two-thirds of all the seats between them, showing that the old certainties have not been swept away. 
    Two parties look like they will have lost all representation in the Assembly, the Green Party and People Before Profit (even though Gerry Carroll will battle to the last in West Belfast, where he won 3,279 votes). 
  • 5/6/2022 4:46:43 PM
  • 5/6/2022 4:55:18 PM

    Foyle First Count

    So the first count is announced in the Foyle constituency where Sinn Féin topped the poll with Padraig Delargy elected on the first count. Mark H Durkan of the SDLP also elected on the first count. Sinn Féin looks like getting Ciara Ferguson over the line. The two SDLP candidates are very close together and should get over the line. It looks like the UUP should just pip the DUP for the last seat. It would give the UUP a rare glimmer of light in an otherwise difficult day. 

    A great showing from Sinn Féin given the embarrassing spectacle last year when it stood down its two MLAs, including the veteran Martina Anderson. 


  • 5/6/2022 4:55:47 PM
  • 5/6/2022 5:00:20 PM
    The first count in Upper Bann has just come in. 
    This is the constituency of Doulas Beattie, leader of the UUP. 
    Sinn Féin again has done very strongly in the constituency. 
    He has 5,199 votes compared to over 6,500 votes for Diane Dodds of the DUP. 
    It will put him in a very difficult position. 
  • 5/6/2022 5:02:44 PM

    State of the Parties with 23 seats filled

    Sinn Féin: 15

    DUP: 2

    UUP: 2
    Alliance: 2
    Others 1
    SDLP: 1
  • 5/6/2022 5:32:43 PM
    Seanín Graham reports;
    Alex Easton topped the poll in North Down with 9,568 votes and insisted he will continue his “journey” as an Independent unionist candidate.
    Easton resigned from the DUP last summer and there was intense speculation he would return to the party in the event of an Assembly victory - to prevent Sinn Féin becoming the largest party.
    Responding to media queries yesterday about such a move – he has eight days to make a decision - Mr Easton said:
    “I will continue my journey as a unionist candidate and MLA for North Down.
    “I enjoy serving my constituency. I like delivering on the ground.
    “I won the seat on the hard work that I do and I will be representing North Down as an independent MLA.”
    Earlier this year, Easton said he quit the DUP as he didn’t feel valued and was only “rolled out for elections”.
  • 5/6/2022 5:33:39 PM

    Analysis on the State of Play

    Gerry Moriarty reports

         Sinn Fein is polling strongly In the Northern Ireland Assembly elections and is on track to be the largest party at Stormont, usurping the DUP, and in line to take the First Minister post.
         The other main headline of the election so far is that the centre-ground Alliance party is also performing well and likely to see its number of seats into double figures, after entering the election with eight seats.
         The DUP which was the largest party in the last Assembly with 28 seats appeared in danger of dropping a couple or possibly more seats.
          Sinn Fein is likely to at least hold the 27 seats it won in the last Assembly elections and therefore in position for the party leader in the North Michelle O’Neill to be next First Minister.
         However, there is great uncertainty over whether a new Northern Executive can be formed. DUP leader Jeffrey Donaldson, who was elected in Lagan Valley has said there can be no new administration until the Northern Ireland protocol issue is resolved. It also remains unclear as to whether the DUP would serve in an Executive where it held the Deputy First Minister post.
         The DUP lost a considerable amount of its vote share to the Traditional Unionist Voice party. Mr Donaldson said a key lesson for unionism is that it “simply cannot afford the divisions that exist".
         “There are seats that might be lost because of divisions, despite that the common ground we share, whether it is our belief in the union or our opposition to the Irish sea border and the protocol,” he said.
         Naomi Long, who topped the poll in East Belfast, said it was “a good day so far for Alliance” which could see its representation increase by four and possibly more seats.
         The SDLP which entered the election with twelve seats was under pressure in at least three seats, including that of its sole Minister Nichola Mallon in North Belfast.
         The Ulster Unionist Party, which had ten seats, also appeared in danger of losing some representation. There also was a question mark over the seat of party leader Doug Beattie in Upper Bann.  
  • 5/6/2022 5:34:56 PM
  • 5/6/2022 5:53:00 PM
  • 5/6/2022 5:54:01 PM
  • 5/6/2022 5:55:17 PM
  • 5/6/2022 6:14:07 PM

    Edwin Poots interview

    Our reporter Enda O’Dowd has been speaking to the former DUP leader Edwin Poots.

    He told him: “Obviously Sinn Fein got their vote out and that sends one message, the Alliance have got their vote out that sends another message and then the DUP and the TUV have got a vote out and that sends a different message entirely.  So there’s probably three different messages that went out.  One is that we need the Northern Ireland Protocol dealt with, another is that we need the Northern Ireland Executive operational and Sinn Fein will make what they may of their vote, they’re best placed to explain it.  
    “It’s been a solid return for the DUP and it’s been a meltdown for the Ulster Unionists and the SDLP, because they’re neither fish nor meat they don’t know what they are and therefore the public don’t know what they’re voting for.
    “The next few months are going to be really difficult until we get the protocol issue resolved and until we get that issue resolved there isn’t going to be the progress that we need to see.  We want to get the executive up and running as quickly as possible but if we can’t get the issue of the Northern Ireland Protocol resolved then that is going to be a real problem.  
    “Well, we wouldn’t be happy [with Sinn Fein taking the First Minister] but we’re a Democratic Party. We have to take that decision at an officer and executive level but non the less our focus at this moment in time is the protocol.”
  • 5/6/2022 6:15:33 PM
    Enda O'Dowd, is of course, a videojournalist with The Irish Times and this has been at the count centre in the Titanic Exhibition Centre in Belfast all day. 
    Here is Enda's video report: 

    ► VIDEO: 'This is a make or break election for Northern Ireland'

    As counting continues in Belfast count centre Sinn Féin are quietly confident of making big gains. Video: Enda ODowd
  • 5/6/2022 6:19:05 PM

    State of the Parties right now. 

    25 seats out of 90 now filled 
  • 5/6/2022 6:36:19 PM

    Will Doug Beattie survive in Upper Bann?

    The Ulster Unionist Party leader is in a fight for his political survival in the constituency of Upper Bann which takes in Craigavon/Portadown, Armagh and Banbridge. 
    Sinn Féin's John O'Dowd is close to the quota and will be re-elected. Jonathan Buckley of the Democratic Unionist Party is also safe. Sinn Féin could win a second seat here. Liam Mackle has 7,260 votes and is 2,100 short of the quota. Sinn Féin has topped the poll in 12 of the constituencies so far but what it gets in count one is often not too far from its final total unless there are Sinn Féin sweepers further down the field. 
    There are none here. So Mackle looks strong but there are no guarantees. Others will quickly creep up on him. 
    Diane Dodds of the DUP comes next. She has 6,548 votes but should get enough transfers from the TUV candidate to keep her ahead of those in fifth and sixth. 
    The big surprise here is the really strong showing by Eoin Tennyson of the Alliance Party. A young candidate, he has 6,440 votes, just behind Dodds. 
    Significantly, he is about 1,250 votes to the good over the candidate in sixth position, Doug Beattie, who has 5,199 votes. 
    The SDLP Dolores Kelly has 3,645 votes while Glenn Barr of the UUP has 3,367. 
    Beattie will need for Glenn Barr to transfer very heavily to hjm if he has any hope of overtaking Tennyson, or Sinn Féin's Mackle. He might pick up some votes from Darrin Foster of the TUV but less than Dodds. Tennyson would be likely to pick up more votes from the SDLP's Kelly than Beattie would. How will the SDLP transfer to Sinn Féin? Will it be enough. 
    It looks like it will be a long night for Beattie... and possibly a long tomorrow too. 
    Given the vagaries of the PR system it's too early to write him off yet.  
  • 5/6/2022 6:48:57 PM
  • 5/6/2022 6:54:45 PM

    Lates Information from Irish Times Election Hub 

    You can follow the results constituency by constituency on 

    Results Northern Ireland Assembly Election 2022 | The Irish Times

    The Irish TimesNorthern Ireland Assembly Election 2022 results. All the MLAs from all the constituencies as they happen from The Irish Times.
  • 5/6/2022 7:00:04 PM

    Robert Swann tops the poll in North Antrim for first time

    Seanín Graham reports on a rare bit of good news for the Ulster Unionist Party

    The Ulster Unionist party’s Robin Swann topped the poll in North Antrim – the first time the party has done so since 1966.

    Mr Swann, who served as the Stormont health minister during the pandemic, said he will be back at his desk on Monday morning as a “caretaker health minister”.

    He told The Irish Times his victory was a “big lift” for the party.

    “To go from 6000 votes in 2017 to 9,530 today is a big day for us. The last time an Ulster Unionist topped the poll was in 1966, before I was born,” he said.

    “But I will be back at my desk on Monday. Decisions need to be made on a cancer strategy, elective care…and we need a recurrent budget”.

  • 5/6/2022 7:03:41 PM
  • 5/6/2022 7:08:30 PM

    Five things to look out for in today's election count:

    1. The Battle between Sinn Féin and the DUP

    Which will emerge as the largest party? Sinn Féin has had a good day and will comfortably retain its 27 seats, according to early predictions. However, the DUP has held out mostly but could lose a few seats, and end up with 25. That would leave Sinn Féin as the biggest party with and allow Michelle O'Neill to become the First Minister, even though it's unlikely the DUP will be willing to reenter the Executive. 

    2. The Alliance Surge.

    Already the party has two MLAs elected with party leader Naomi Long topping the poll in East Belfast. How many gains will it make and could it win more than 13 seats. It will be interesting to see if the party can extend its base beyond the greater Belfast area. 

    3. Can the TUV make gains?

    The Traditional Unionist Voice party has been a one MP party, namely Jim Allister. But despite being a one-man band he has shown himself capable of making a lot of noise and has outflanked the DUP in his indignant opposition to the Northern Ireland protocol. The party has made gains in terms of percentage but it's too early to say at this stage if it will translate into seats. The party has done well in Strangford with its candidate Stephen Cooper from Comber who has taken well over 3,000 votes and he may take a seat at the expense of the DUP. 

    4. Meltdown for party leaders? 

    The Green Party and the Ulster Unionist Party have had bad days and the seats of their leaders, Clare Bailey of the Greens in Belfast South and Douglas Beattie of the UUP in Upper Ban are in big struggles to retain their own seats. The two parties, and the SDLP, have been squeezed by the Alliance. 

    5. And what of the SDLP?

    At this stage it does not look like a great day for the party and it could suffer a number of losses at the expense of the Alliance Party, and also find itself squeezed out by Sinn Féin, which could offer voters the prize of a first nationalist First Minister. Nichola Mallon in particular looks like she is in difficulty in North Belfast. 

  • 5/6/2022 7:15:35 PM

    Winners: Sinn Féin wins a quarter of a million votes

    Sinn Féin has had a huge day in this election and has won a total of 250,388 first preferences, making it the largest party. As of now it has 16 seats, the Alliance has 4, the DUP 3, the UUP 3, the SDLP 1 and Independent Unionist Alex Easton also has 1. 
    The other big winner is the Alliance Party which looks like taking three seats from the SDLP and gaining a further two at the expense of the Greens. The party also looks set to win two seats in East Belfast, where leader Naomi Long is based. 
    The losers are the other parties that would be closer to the centre: the SDLP, UUP, the Green Party, which will lose both its seats. The DUP has experienced a bit of slippage and, of course, has ceded the status as main party to Sinn Féin. That gives a nationalist part the right for the first time to take the position as First Minister, a watershed moment in Northern politics. 
  • 5/6/2022 7:22:03 PM
  • 5/6/2022 7:36:45 PM

    Big Swings up for Sinn Féin, Alliance and TUV:

    Big Swings Down for DUP and SDLP

    This graphic (from BBC Northern Ireland website) is telling. It shows that Sinn Fin has made marginal gains. The big swings have been a 6.7 per cent drop in support for the DUP, which is shocking. That was mostly hoovered up by the Traditional Unionist Voice which gained a whopping 5 points going from 2.5 per cent to 7.7 per cent. The Alliance also had big gains, 4.5 per cent bringing it into double figures for the first time. An almost 3 per point drop experienced by the SDLP led to seat losses. While the loss for the Green Party looks marginal, the party's momentum (which should have been strong) has completely stalled. 

    Northern Ireland Assembly Election Results 2022

    BBC NewsGet the latest news and election results in the 2022 election from BBC News
  • 5/6/2022 7:38:18 PM
    Northern Editor Freya McClement's pre-election prediction of 27 seats for Sinn Féin will not be far off. The party could possibly gain one or two seats (but all to be decided in final counts). That said, there is no doubt that it will be the largest party. 
  • 5/6/2022 7:47:46 PM
  • 5/6/2022 7:53:23 PM

    The Last Seats and the Final Count...

    There are 18 constituencies and each has five seats. The Proportional Representation - Single Transferable Vote (PR-STV) means that with a large field, the difference between a win and loss on the last seat is huge. 
    So for example, Douglas Beattie, leader of the UUP, will see his political fate determined on the last count in Upper Bann. In East Derry, we will know for sure if Sinn Féin has made a gain at the expense of Sinn Féin. In Strangford, where the TUV hoped to win a second seat, Stephen Cooper's strong showing in the first count may be undone by others overtaking him for that last seat. 
  • 5/6/2022 8:20:32 PM

    Mary Lou McDonald's talks of 'symbolic' significance of first nationalist in First Minister Role

    Mary Lou McDonald and Michelle O'Neill celebrate the result
    From her BBC interview
    Sinn Féin’s Mary Lou McDonald hails significance of the prospective election of first nationalist first minister in North but admits opponents will have to be persuaded a united Ireland is an “opportunity”…
     “It is significant and it's not simply symbolic, that we are now it seems on the cusp of a nationalist or republican leading the executive, being the first minister in the north. And it's significant because it's a moment of equality. It says that there's no job that's beyond anybody's reach. It says the highest office in the land can be occupied by a nationalist, a Republican and a progressive person. 
    “That of course, is the source of joy for us from my political tradition. But I think it should be a source of positivity for everybody across society because that moment of equality is special. It says that we've changed and it also says we are only going forward and we're not going back. 
    “To Unionists to people who would be anxious about the debate about reunification, what form it might take, let me also say this, we have to prepare and we need to work together to form this future. 
    “I believe a reunified Ireland is the best opportunity that we are going to have, I think it opens up economic, social, cultural opportunity that we should grab with both hands. But I also know that there are people on the island that I need to convince of that and we want to hear from them. 
    “So I believe Michelle O'Neill if she's First Minister and has that opportunity will demonstrate by action, how you lead for everybody, including those with whom you may agree to differ on some points. But this is an exciting time and it's a time for generosity and kindness. So that's what I would say to our Unionist friends.”
  • 5/6/2022 8:24:14 PM
  • 5/6/2022 8:28:20 PM
    We have been following the flux and flow of the Upper Bann count all day, and espeically the fate of UUP leader Doug Beattie.  Here is Brian Hutton's take on it from a little earlier:

    Can Doug Beattie claw enough transfers to ride out the turbulence?

    The Irish TimesColum Eastwood not shy about admitting his party looked like it was in for a hammering
  • 5/6/2022 8:35:27 PM

    Latest state of play with 31 of 90 seats filled

  • 5/6/2022 8:45:26 PM
  • 5/6/2022 8:47:10 PM
  • 5/6/2022 9:05:10 PM

    Doug Beattie comments to The Irish Times 

    Brian Hutton spoke to Doug Beattie in Magherafelt:

    Emerging in the car park outside the Magherafelt count centre as night fell at around 9:30pm, Doug Beattie admitted he was facing a fight to cling onto his seat, and, perhaps, leadership of the UUP.  

    “Everybody is in a fight for their seat,” he told The Irish Times.  
    “It is a long convoluted process. The first preferences are in and until the transfers are all counted it is anybody’s game, so I’m no different to anybody else. I’m still in there, I’m still fighting. I’m confident I will get elected, but I’m fighting like everyone else.”
    Beattie said his party had “topped the poll in North Antrim, we are in with a shout of getting a seat in Foyle, which we didn’t have before and we have done incredibly well in East Antrim, going from 22 to 44 per cent of the vote.”  
    “There are positives and negatives. You don’t start calling it until the fight is done and then we look at reestablishing and changing anything we got wrong.”
    On questions over his future leadership, he added: “If people want to raise questions about my leadership that is their call. I’m the leader because the party voted me as leader. If the party executive don’t want me as leader then they can vote me out - that’s their call.
    “I’m willing to stay on as party leader but if the party decides against it, that is up to them. It is the party executive who decides that, and I’m at the behest of them. If they don’t think it is going in the right direction under me then they have the right to choose someone else.”
    Beattie said the dip in his party’s performance on the last Assembly elections in 2017 was down to a “whole range of different issues” including the rise of the Alliance P and divisions in unionism over the Northern Ireland Protocol - both “huge issues”, he said. 
  • 5/6/2022 9:29:30 PM
  • 5/6/2022 9:39:47 PM
  • 5/6/2022 9:42:04 PM
  • 5/6/2022 9:43:08 PM
  • 5/6/2022 9:57:59 PM
  • 5/6/2022 10:15:27 PM
  • 5/6/2022 10:43:18 PM

    It's a Wrap

    Counting has been suspended until tomorrow in many of the 18 constituencies but continues in a handful. Matthew O'Toole of the SDLP was elected a few minutes ago in South Belfast. 
    We are going to wrap up now. Sinn Féin looks like it will come back with the same number of seats, 27, or may have 28, if it gains in Upper Bann at the expense of UUP leader Doug Beattie. It's been a huge win for the part. Its vote share is marginally up but it has cemented its position as the leading party in Northern Ireland. 
    The DUP looks like it will contain its losses to two or three seats despite a drop of 7 points in its first preference support. 
    The Alliance has had a great day, and thanks to a big surge will make gains of at least three if not more, from its present eight seats. It has won two seats in East Antrim, looks like winning two seats in South Belfast, and could win two seats in East Belfast. It also looks set to make a gain in Upper Bann and might win in Lagan Valley and Strangford. 
    In contrast it has not been good for the SDLP. It could lose four seats or more as finals seats are determined, with bad days in Upper Bann and South Down. It is also in a struggle in East Derry and party deputy leader Nichola Mallon is in difficulty in North Belfast but might just fend off the Alliance candidate for the final seat. 
    Similarly, the UUP has flatlined. Its candidate has done well in Derry and Robert Swann topped the poll in North Antrim. 
    The TUV tripled its support from 2.5 per cent to 7.5 per cent. Despite its hopes that Stephen Cooper would win the party an extra seat in Strangford has diminished as the counts have ground on there. Jim Allister, the party's sole representative, was comfortably re-elected. 
    The Greens have lost both their seats, as the party's momentum has stalled in Northern Ireland. 
    Gerry Carroll of People Before Profit is in a Titanic (literally and metaphorically) struggle for the final seat in West Belfast. 
    So now just under half (42) of the 90 seats have been filled. 
    The State of play at the moment:
    Sinn Féin 17
    DUP 10
    Alliance Party 7
    UUP  4
    SDLP 2
    Others 2
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