AFTER 11 days of vote counting and candidates sweating on the arrival of postal ballots, Brittany Lauga finally became the official winner for the seat of Keppel last night.
In what seemed like a clear cut result on election night, only 1939 votes ended up separating the top two candidates at the end of the preference distribution process.
The two candidate results after the distribution of preferences on the Electoral Commission Queensland website had Labor's Brittany Lauga winning with 16,419 votes with 53.14 per cent of the vote ahead of One Nation's Matt Loth who garnered 14,480 votes and 46.86 per cent of the vote.
After receiving 54.80 per cent of the two candidate results in 2015, Mrs Lauga's 2017 result represents a slight 1.7 per cent drop.
Mrs Lauga was grateful to the people of Keppel for backing her to stay on as their member of parliament.
"I'm very pleased with the result and humbled by the community's endorsement to continue my work for the people and region I love as their local MP,” Mrs Lauga said.
"I've been back at work since after the election, working to grow jobs and our local economy.
"There's lots to be done and I'm getting stuck in.”
In his statement of concession, Mr Loth was also appreciative of the support he had received from the local community.
"Keppel has been one of the toughest fought seats in the Queensland state election, with no clear outcome for 11 days this election,” Mr Loth said.
"I'm proud to say One Nation have seen the strongest swing towards the party since 1998 and the people of Keppel certainly rallied behind myself and Pauline this past six months.
"One Nation have put the two old parties on notice with over 58 per cent of Keppel rejecting Brittany Lauga and the Labor party by voting for alternative candidates like myself.”
He said we had a spectacular region just waiting to be discovered by the rest of this country and international guests.
"My greatest wish is to see Great Keppel Island proceed with its integrated resort which in turn will ignite jobs throughout the region and spur on so many other employment opportunities,” he said.
"I trust Mrs Lauga will work with Tower Holdings to ensure this state of the art project receives the support it truly deserves.
"To all of my volunteers and party faithful, thank you. I've been given such a rare opportunity to represent a party that genuinely cares about the future of Queensland and our community.”
Mr Loth said he had thoroughly enjoyed showcasing our region through social media and this election and intended to spend more of his time highlighting the free things Keppel has to offer through YouTube and other social media platforms.
"A true local never gives up, so you can be assured I'll work towards the next state election,” he said.