The National, Friday July 5th, 2013
By MOUA OMOA
Polling for the local level government elections in the Highlands region and Motu-Koita have been deferred to July 15, Electoral Commissioner Andrew Trawen said yesterday.
Polling for the other provinces would start as scheduled tomorrow, and Mamose next week.
He said the delay was not a result of funding issues but because electoral officials and returning officers needed an extension to conduct training as well as re-check the common rolls, materials and logistics before going out to the wards.
“Everywhere else will start polling tomorrow except for the Highlands and Motu-Koita, which have been re-scheduled for Monday, July 15,” Trawen said.
“The delay in the Highlands region is to give enough time for election managers, returning officers and assistant returning officers and their respective administrations to ensure their required logistics are in place and their polling teams trained and ready to conduct polling.
“Polling for Motu-Koita has been deferred because of an ongoing verification exercise to re-check the updated common roll to ensure all names are correct and in line with the changes for the Motu-Koita voters as per the MKA Act 2007.”
Trawen said this year’s LLG elections would end on time for all provinces as the changes were still within the polling period.
He appealed to all voters across the country to go to the polls in a peaceful manner.
“With the commencement of polling, I appeal to the people not to disrupt the progress of the LLG elections and ensure they respect the presiding officers and all the electoral officials,” he said.
“The polling schedules indicate that there will be teams of five assigned to conduct polling for four to five wards, with one day polling for the less-populated wards and a maximum of three days for wards with larger populations.
“Presiding officers have been authorised to announce the ward councillor after polling at ward level before moving on to the next ward, while counting and announcements of LLG presidents will be done by the returning officers or assistant returning officers at the district headquarters.”
Polling will be from 8am to 6pm daily.