‘Local elections vital’

Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprises and Development (FRIEND) director Sashi Kiran. Picture: FILE

COMMUNITY and local elections are just as important as national elections.

This is the view of Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprises and Development (FRIEND) director Sashi Kiran during a seminar on the role of elections in a democracy, organised in Lautoka on Thursday.

Speaking as a panellist on the topic, Ms Kiran said even community-based organisations (CBOs) had elections.

“Why should the community-based organisations have elections or the third sector be accountable when we can’t have elections at our local governments?” she said.

“If those leaders are not performing, can we change them? If those spaces are not happening for us, we are not able to elect, we are not able to see leadership at our own local level, how do we participate in national elections or choose leaders at a national level?”

She said leaders were chosen based on their capacity to tackle issues relevant to all citizens.

“If you think about why we have elections, we have elections to choose leaders, we’re all involved and we need leaders who will lead our nation in decision-making that is relevant and accountable to all of us,” she added.

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