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$44m poll budget

Shalveen Chand
Friday, January 17, 2014

A BUDGET of $44million is being looked at for the election in September and work leading up to it.

According to the Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, most of it will be given by donors.

Government has allocated $17.9m for the elections in the 2014 Budget and Papua New Guinea is expected to give another $18m to $19m in March this year.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said donor nations have put their hands up on how they would like to help Fiji.

He said not everybody would be giving financial aid.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said India had given an undertaking for providing indelible ink while another nation would be providing voting booths.

The Electoral Commission yesterday said the budget for their operations and the elections as a whole would only be known after some more work were done.

Commission chair Chen Bunn Young said a lot of work was still left to be done and things happened on a step by step basis.

Meanwhile, the commission and Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said the election was not being rushed. They stated that everything was being done to ensure transparency that would lead to a fair and credible election.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum had earlier said the election ballot would be held over one day and for this purpose would employ about to 19,000 for that day.

Logistics for this is also being done. There is also the issue of voter education.

According to Mr Young, all this will take due time.

Seven and a half months remain until the elections in September.

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