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14,000 workers

Nasik Swami
Tuesday, May 20, 2014

WITH four months left for the much awaited general election, the Fijian Elections Office has announced it will recruit 14,000 people to work during the September 17 polling day.

Elections Supervisor Mohammed Saneem said the office had budgeted $5million for the recruitment exercise.

Mr Saneem said his office would hold open days around the country starting this week where interested applicants could lodge their applications, adding that emphasis would be placed on non-civil servants in a bid to make the election less government oriented.

"We will be looking for individuals who can respect and also abide by our core values," he said.

"Recruitment teams will be based all around Fiji and the date and times of these venues that will be created will be published in the daily newspapers — also available on election website."

"The job requirements for polling day officials is very simple, we are going to test a person's ability to assess and equate through certain small problems that we'll put into the test and we'll also be testing a person's ability to count and be able to understand the counting procedure and generally about the elections in Fiji.

"First you have to pass the test to be a polling official, then after you go through a training process, you will get to sit another test and from that test we will have a ranking criteria and we will have the number of presiding officers that we require.

"At the polling stations, we have four types of roles the staff will be performing - the presiding officers, they will be the in charge of the polling stations, they will manage the entire polling station and the set-up in accordance with instructions from the Elections Office."

He said there will be assistant presiding officers who will assist the presiding officer, manage the floor of voters, check electors for ink fingers and respond to queries.

"Then we have the polling day workers on a rotational basis - they will either be the persons issuing ballots, they could also be in the ballot boxes to guard the ballot and they will also be inking the fingers of the voter."

At a polling station, they expect to have between five or seven staff but larger polling stations and venues will have more.

He said after applicants have been shortlisted, they will undergo another training by the EU.

"We currently have some expert trainers funded by the EU who are designing the training. First we will train 25 trainers and assistants and these 25 will then go and train the rest of the 14,000."

Applicants should be apolitical and unaffiliated with political parties.

"The job requirements for polling day officials is very simple, we are going to test a person's ability to assess and equate through certain small problems that we'll put into the test and we'll also be testing a person's ability to count and be able to understand the counting procedure and generally about the elections in Fiji.

"First you have to pass the test to be a polling official, then after you go through a training process, you will get to sit another test and from that test we will have a ranking criteria and we will have the number of presiding officers that we require.

"At the polling stations, we have four types of roles the staff will be performing - the presiding officers, they will be in charge of the polling stations, they will manage the entire polling station and the set-up in accordance with instructions from the Elections Office."

He said there would be assistant presiding officers to assist the presiding officer manage the floor of voters, check electors for ink fingers and respond to queries.

"Then we have the polling day workers on a rotational basis. They will either be the persons issuing ballots, they could also be in the ballot boxes to guard the ballot and they will also be inking the fingers of the voter."





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