Stay put until govt is formed, says Gelu

National, Normal

The National, Wednesday 25th July, 2012

ENDORSED candidates who have won seats cannot switch parties until after the formation of government and the election of a prime minister.
Acting registrar of the Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates Commission Dr Alphonse Gelu said this law also applied to independent candidates who had won seats.
He said they would remain as independents until after the election of a speaker before they could join a political party.“Only a political party with the highest number of elected MPs will be invited by the governor-general to form government,” Gelu told a media briefing yesterday.
He said this requirement was necessary under the Organic Law on the Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates“The recent statement that winning candidates can move around at this time is misleading and contrary to the provisions and spirit of OLIPPAC.”
Gelu said members who switched parties now and before the formation of government would be listed under the parties that endorsed them as candidates to contest the 2012 general election.
“It will be after the formation of government and the election of a prime minister that members of parliament can jump parties. Anytime before the formation of the government will not be allowed.”
He warned that fines, imprisonment and deregistration of political parties are some of the penalties set out within OLIPPAC for offenders and offending parties.
Gelu said he was seriously contemplating enforcing these laws in this formative period.