Polls hiccup

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By CLIFFORD FAIPARIK
ELECTORAL Commissioner Patilias Gamato is still awaiting a K1.5 million funding from the Government and the National Capital District Commission to hold the Motu-Koitabu Assembly elections.
The assembly election process is into its second week of campaigning and voting is scheduled for Oct 3.
“I am very disappointed that the commission has not received the K900,000 from the Government and K600,000 from the NCDC, totalling K1.5 million,” Gamato said.
“I am now calling on the Government and NCDC to urgently release the funds so that we can conduct the Motu-Koitabu elections.”
Gamato said it was too late to call off the elections.
“They (Government and NCDC) must find the money and give it to us to conduct the Motu Koita elections. They have no choice to deny the rights of the voters,” he said.
Treasury Secretary Dairi Vele said the Government needed to first verify the claims before releasing its component of K900,000.
National Capital District city manager Bernard Kipit also said they had to first verify the claims before releasing the K600,000.
The Government had deferred all local level government elections, which were to be held this year, to next March. It allowed only the Motu Koita assembly elections to go ahead this year. The Motu-Koitabu Act 2007 allows the Motu-Koitabu assembly elections to be held separately from the local level government elections.
Gamato said the Motu-Koitabu candidates were now into the second week of campaigning but the ballot papers had not been printed because of funding issues.
“Polling for the Motu-Koitabu assembly elections will be conducted on Wednesday Oct 3 and the commission is asking the Government and NCDC to release the funds without further delay,” he said.

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