Raising nomination fee still won’t cover costs, Sir Julius says

National

NEW Ireland Governor Sir Julius Chan says the increase in nomination fees will not cover the operating cost of the 2017 national election as argued by the Government.
Instead, he said the increase from K1000 to K10,000 would deprive people of their constitutional rights to run for public office.
“Whatever you charge will not pay for the election’s operational costs,” Sir Julius said.
“Raising it to K10,000 or K20,000 is unconstitutional given the average income of an ordinary Papua New Guinean.
“Every one of us is guided by the constitution.
“So my view is guided by the Constitution.
“So if you are putting it that high, you are robbing the people of their rights.
Sir Julius said the Government’s motive to raise the fee was more political than anything else.
“They (Government) say that it is to meet the cost,” he said.
“I do not think
so.
“Not long we will have an election like the recent American election where only Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton contested.
“Is this the kind of society we are heading to?
“Only millionaires like Donald Trump to contest for public office?”
Sir Julius said he had increase the nomination fees 30 years ago from K100 to K1000 when he was the Prime Minister.
“We raise the fee because we wanted genuine candidates to contest
the elections and K1000 was in the range of responsibility where it
was still affordable for an average income earning citizen to contest,” he said.
“It was not really meant to pay for the election operation costs.”

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