Electoral Commission calls for Expression of Interest for the Audit of the National Register of Voters

The Electoral Commission will be advertising for expressions of interest from reputable firms, agencies and organizations that can conduct the audit of the National Register of Voters in Fiji.

The expression of interest for the audit of the National Register of Voters will be open for 21 days ending on 24 November 2021 at 4pm. The Electoral Commission anticipates that organizations with experience and knowledge in this regard both locally and internationally will be keen to undertake the exercise.

Electoral Commission Chairperson Mr. Suresh Chandra says “The Multinational Observer Group from the 2018 General Election recommended that the Electoral Commission should consider an audit of the voter list. We have had that as part of our long term plan and since the election is very near it will be ideal to conduct an audit so that the voter list can be audited just as we enter the election phase.”

The voter list audit will be based on internationally accepted principles of audit of voter lists which includes lists to voter and voter to lists analysis as well as any other general recommendations.

Mr. Chandra explained that a panel of assessors made up of Electoral Commissioners will determine the institution or organization that will ultimately undertake the audit of the voter list.


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Link: EOI National Register of Voters

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

Electoral Commission approves format for the Provisional Voter Lists

Electoral Commission approves format for the Provisional Voter Lists

The Electoral Commission [EC] at its virtual meeting today has approved the format for the Provisional Voter List to be distributed to the Turaga-ni-Koros, Advisory Councilors and Political Parties as per Section 40 of the Electoral Act, 2014.

The Supervisor of Elections [SoE] is required under Section 40 of the Electoral Act, 2014 to publish the Provisional Voter List for each Polling Station as approved by the Electoral Commission on or before the 30th of September each year except for an Election year.

For the year 2021, the EC has approved that the format welcomes comments from the Turaga-ni-Koros and Advisory Councilors to verify the names of voters from Polling Stations in their villages or settlements.

The EC has further considered providing the copies of the Provisional Voter Lists to Political Parties. It has approved that the Provisional Voter List for Polling Stations will be given in Electronic copies for free to every registered Political Party in Fiji, so that they are able to peruse the list and provide feedback to the FEO for any corrections or issues they have identified.

The EC considers this as a very important step towards transparency as well as verifiability of the Voter Lists in the next General Election. As such, the EC urges all Political Parties to thoroughly analyze the list and present the FEO with responses so that the list that will be used in the next General Elections, is as accurate as possible.

The Chairman of the Electoral Commission, says that Political Parties are important Stakeholders in the Election and including them in processes such as the verification of the Provisional Voter List will help strengthen cooperation and ensure that information used for the next General Election is accurate and up to date.

 

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Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

Statement from the Chair of The Electoral Commission

Statement from the Chair of The Electoral Commission

Mr Suresh Chandra

The Electoral Commission welcomes the announcement by the Attorney General and the Minister responsible for Elections that the government is now considering amending the Electoral (Registration of Voters) Act 2012 as well as other consequent legislation so as to ensure the registration in the National Register of Voters is done based on records that are maintained officially at other agencies of Government.

The Electoral Commission recognizes that the right to Free and Fair elections is guaranteed under the Fijian Constitution cannot be properly executed until and unless the Voter List that is to be used in the national election is free from error, correct and the same can be verified against other relevant documents and official sources.

“To this end the Electoral Commission has always supported the Fijian Elections Office in its endeavors to match and verify details of voters against other registries in Fiji. We understand that the Court in a recent judgement has made findings which allows registration of individuals with details that may not be found directly from official sources,” said Chair,

“Whilst, we respect the decision of the Court, the Electoral Commission as the institution that is responsible for the conduct of a free and fair election in accordance with the laws of Fiji, the Electoral Commission is also concerned that the same might set a precedent where people may enroll themselves in the National Register using pseudo names and names that we are not able to verify. This may result in issues on Election Day where the names may not be found and may also result in abuse of the voter card as a universal ID when people apply for financial services and government services etc…”

The Electoral Commission is concerned about the paramount credibility of the voter register and as such the Electoral Commission welcomes and supports the current efforts by government to amend the electoral legislation to ensure that the voter list remains accurate, complete and verifiable.

The Electoral Commission will review the proposed amendment and provide its comments once it is received. 

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Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

173 to be the first number on the Ballot Paper for the next General Election

Statement from the Secretary to The Electoral Commission

Mr Mohammed Saneem

15 July 2021- 11am

173 to be the first number on the Ballot Paper for the next General Election

The Electoral Commission this morning conducted a ball draw to determine the first 3-digit number that will appear on the ballot paper for the next general election.

The number draw is pursuant to Section 36(2) (c) of the Electoral Act 2014. The Act outlines that the Electoral Commission is required to approve the first three (3) digit number of the Ballot paper for the 2022 General Election.

The event was attended by members of political parties including the Party Leader for Social Democratic Liberal Party as well as the Acting President of the Fiji Labour Party with other stakeholders tuning in to the live event.

The event was also witnessed by a Police Officer from the Fiji Police Force.

At its meeting earlier this morning, the Electoral Commission had approved that the ballot paper for the next election will start with the series 100, so the first number in the 3-digit number would be one (1) followed by two (2) digits that were drawn randomly from the barrel by the Chairperson.

The Commission members all attended the draw virtually and witnessed the event. They authorized that at the end of the draw the Chairperson would announce the three (3) digits as approved by the Commission for the next general election.

As announced by the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, the first three (3) digit number to appear on the ballot paper for the 2022 General Election will be 173.

After the draw, a sample of the ballot paper with about 200 candidates for the next general election was demonstrated to political representatives that had attended as well as on the live platforms.

The next general election can be held between 9th July 2022 and 9th January 2023.

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2018 General Election Joint Report Handover

2018 General Election Joint Report Handover

The Electoral Commission [EC] and the Supervisor of Elections [SoE] have handed in their Joint Report on the 2018 General Election to the President of the Republic of Fiji, Major General [Ret’d], Jioji Konousi Konrote, this morning. The Joint Report annexes the Final Report of the Supervisor of Elections as well as the MOG Report on the 2018 General Election.

Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Mr Suresh Chandra, said that the handing in of the report that contains extensive commentary on the procedural aspects of the process as well as details of actual activities during the election completes the Commission’s task in terms of the 2018 General Election.

“We have carefully considered the SoE’s report on the conduct of the 2018 General Election, the MOG Report and its findings and recommendations, and we have thereafter considered that primarily there is a need to spread electoral activities over 4 years instead of leaving most of it to the election period,” said Mr Chandra.

Mr Chandra further explained that “with the establishment of the FEO and the Electoral Commission as long term establishments, Fiji needs to refocus some of the aspects of elections to be due and finalized 1 or 2 years prior to the first date the Writ can be issued.” He added that this would ensure that Political Parties and various other stakeholders are involved and if they wish, they can play an active role in preparing the country for the next General Election.

Supervisor of Elections, Mr Mohammed Saneem said “after two [2] successful elections based on the current framework, Fijians are now more familiar with elections and are more empowered to play an active role. A lot of the disinformation and concocted theories were debunked in the last election paving the way in building more trust and confidence in the institutions.”

Work has now begun on the preparation for the next General Election that can take place between 26 May 2022 to 9 January 2023.

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Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

The First number that will appear on the 2018 General Election Ballot Paper.

The First number that will appear on the 2018 General
Election Ballot Paper is 508.

The First number that will appear on the 2018 General Election Ballot Paper is 508.
The Fijian Electoral Commission has approved the number 508 after a ball draw at the Head office in Suva in May this year. A blindfolded person randomly selected the numbers and the entire event was witnessed by police officers from the Fiji
Police Force and members of the Fijian Electoral Commission. The Electoral Commission Chairperson, Mr Suresh Chandra confirmed that the numbers used for the 2014 General Election would not be used again. Therefore
the first number of the Ballot Paper for the 2018 General Election will be a three digit number within the 400 – 500 range.
The number draw is pursuant to Section 36(2) (c) of the Electoral Act 2014. The Act outlines that the Electoral Commission is required to approve the first three (3) digit number of the Ballot paper for the 2018 General Election.