By MALUM NALU
Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato estimates that it will cost up to K620 million to stage next year’s general elections, but says that he does not expect to get that much money from the Government.
He told The National last week that he had given this figure to the Government, but understood that it may be reduced due to the financial situation of the country.
“I gave a figure but it’s all subject to changes, subject to strict management,” Gamato said.
“My initial figure was about K620 million, but again, that will be subject to changes.
“That figure includes the security component as well and is just estimation.
“The real estimations will come as soon as the polling schedules are done.
“I cannot disclose any figure.
“The last figure (K620 million) I gave was just an estimate, so we have a cutoff point, where we can work upwards or downwards.”
Gamato was confident this would not affect the election.
“Funding should be okay,” he said.
“I’ve revised the funding estimate because of the financial situation our country is facing.
“I don’t think it’s necessary to continue pressing the Government because I’ve raised the issue, they’ve heard it, so I’m satisfied with what they are giving.
“They are giving us a reduced amount, but there’s assurance they’ll give me some funds, once our trust account is opened.
“The process of the trust account is almost completed.
“Hopefully, this week, I should sign off the trust instruments.
“The finance secretary and I will be the signatories.”
By MALUM NALU