writs

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By CLIFFORD FAIPARIK
NOMINATIONS of candidates contesting the 111 seats in Parliament, and the election campaign, are underway following the issuing of writs by the Governor-General Bob Dadae yesterday.
Dadae, who also formally resigned as the Kabwum MP, signed the writs for the 89 Open seats and 22 Regional seats at Government House.
Nominations began at 4pm yesterday and close at 4pm next Thursday. The election campaign period ends on June 23.
Polling starts on Saturday June 24 and ends on Saturday July 8.
The return of writs should be on or before Monday July 24.
Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato advised candidates who had already filed their nominations that they could start campaigning.
“Information on the polling schedule and polling places across the country will be released at the end of this month so that people will know where and when to go and cast their votes,” he said.
After the close of nominations on Thursday, Gamato said returning officers would pick candidates’ names in a draw.
“They will allocate a number to each of them. They will then give us the number and the photograph of each of these candidates for us to produce the posters showing the candidates contesting the seats.”
He said posters would be printed locally.
“We have already identified local printers. Once the nomination period ends, we will get all the information and start printing the candidates’ photos and numbers.”
Meanwhile, Gamato said they had already received K80 million of the K400 million allocated for the general election.
“We have spent over K50 million already mainly for election preparation programmes,” he said.
“Some fund have been committed already and so it will be used up soon.”
Gamato said the term of the current MPs would expire on July 24 when the writs were expected to be returned.

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