Court feels EC dragging vote recount: Kassman

National

By DEMAS TIEN
THE Supreme Court has directed the Electoral Commission to file an affidavit stating when it made the decision for a recount of the Kandep open electorate votes in Enga.
Justice Stephen Kassman gave the direction yesterday because the court was of the view that the Electoral Commission was dragging the recount, which was ordered by a full court on Sept 6.
The commission’s lawyer, Ray William said the recount would start today but he was unable to tell the court when the commissioner made the decision for the recount after it was ordered by the court.
An application by Don Polye to stay the recount and his slip rule application was further adjourned to Monday.
Justice Kassman said the two applications will go before the same bench that dealt with the two election petition review applications filed by Polye and election petitioner Alfred Manase.
The bench comprised Justice Allan David, Justice Jacinta Murray and Justice Fraser Pitpit.
Kassman said all the three judges had travelled out of National Capital District.
Following a decision by the national court on May 2 which set aside the declaration of Polye as Kandep MP in the 2012 general election, Polye filed an election petition review in the Supreme Court for it to review the decision of the national court.
The national court also ordered the Electoral Commission to count five ballot boxes that were rejected during the election.
Election petitioner Manase also filed an election petition review after he was aggrieved by the national court decision.
The Supreme Court on Sept 6, after hearing submissions on the two review applications, ordered a recount of all votes in the ballot boxes within 30 days.
The high court quashed the national court’s order for the counting of five ballot boxes that were rejected.
The Supreme Court ruled that pending the counting of all the votes, Polye will remain as Kandep MP.

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