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'Decree will be out soon'

Dawn Gibson
Wednesday, February 12, 2014

THE Electoral Decree is expected to be out before the end of the month.

Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum confirmed this saying the electoral rules will be finalised by this weekend.

"And then the draft copy, very much in its final form, will be sent to the Electoral Commission, as you know who has requested for a copy of it for their input and their review of it," Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said at a press conference in Suva yesterday.

"We've had discussions with the chairman of the commission who said that they would turn it around within a week and thereafter, upon its finalisation, we should then have it gazetted."

He said the public could expect the decree to be implemented by the end of the month. The decree will include rules for the electoral process, how polling is to be conducted and when people can expect a "blackout period", among other things.

"The Electoral Decree in fact contains a number of specific guidelines, rules and regulations which we are trying to modernise from what used to exist and indeed ensure that there's objectivity in terms of the implementation of those rules.

"It also then talks about the rules pertaining to voting and, of course, the manner in which votes are cast and it also contains rules pertaining to the counting of votes." President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau is expected to announce the date of election at least 60 days before the election day itself, the A-G confirmed.