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First things first

Nasik Swami
Wednesday, April 16, 2014

SUPERVISOR of Elections Mohammed Saneem says the first thing the Fijian Elections Office needs to do is identify suitable polling stations by April 30.

Mr Saneem said when the registration of voters took place, it was based on the previous 2006 elections in which there were 1158 polling stations.

"Under the new system, we have to now create more polling stations, more polling venues because this is a one-day polling. It's not a seven-day system, it's a public holiday and we're trying to take voters nearest to their homes so this means we have to identify more polling stations between 2006 and now," he said.

Mr Saneem said there were certain parts of Fiji which had noticed a complete drift of voters from that area.

"There are certain parts of Fiji in which new settlements have been created."

He highlighted an example where along Cunningham Rd, there were no houses in 2012.

"You drive around today, there are 50 to 60 houses, which would mean that if two people are in a house, that's 120 voters.

"So those are the people that we need to now account for and we need to now give polling stations for them."

He said officials from the Elections Office would meet the divisional commissioners to try and identify information about new settlements.

"Then we will have to then move the voters according to their street address to the nearest polling station.

"That exercise we'll do internally first. Then we will finalise the entire list of proposed polling stations for the 2014 General Election by 30th of April, and we will publish the list of polling stations with the allocation of voters, so the provisional list is due early May.

"By early May, voters should be able to go to any of the publication centres such as our website, the newspapers, and printed out versions will be readily available at our registration centres and voters can find out what's the polling station near to where they live."

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