Official: 75 per cent of voters in Manus voted

Islands

By Elizabeth Vuvu 
ONLY 75 per cent of the 31,985 eligible voters in Manus voted, provincial returning officer Sponsa Navi says.
Navi said 23,878 people voted in the election while 25 per cent, or 8107, did not.
He said these voters may have had their own reasons not to vote or their names were missing on the final electoral roll.
The province wrapped up the election when the winners of the regional and open seats, Charlie Benjamin and Job Pomat, were declared on Sunday at 8:30pm.
Incumbent governor Benjamin polled 7371 votes to retain his seat while runner-up George Sikin finished with 5992 votes.
Former Manus Open MP and National Fisheries Authority chairman Pomat won the Open seat.
After the 32nd exclusion, Pomat polled 6844 votes over Social Democratic Party candidate Wep Kanawi who had 5908.
“The major issue Manus faced this election was with the electoral roll and we received a handful of petitions with regards to this,” Navi said.
He said this issue must be treated as a matter of urgency once the national election was completed nationwide.
Meanwhile, Navi said the election progressed well in the province without any major security threats.
He thanked returning officer Theresa Yohang and her assistant returning officers who assisted in getting the common roll in place even though it was a hectic job.
Navi commended the service providers, security personnel and the public for allowing the election process to be completed.

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