2018 election beckons

Electoral Commission chairperson Suresh Chandra receives the Writ of Elections from the President Jioji Konrote at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA/FILE

THE announcement of the date of the 2018 General Election would have definitely come as a relief for many people around the country.

When the President Jioji Konrote issued the Writ for the Election yesterday morning, it was another step in the process that will culminate with people casting their vote next month.

The order was made in accordance with Section 59(1) of the Constitution of the republic of Fiji and Section 21 of the Electoral Act 2014 and with the advice of the Prime Minister.

All nominations of candidates should be received by the Fijian Elections Office on October 15.

That was the directive the President gave to the Chairman for the Fijian Electoral Commission, Suresh Chandra in Suva yesterday. Voter registrations effectively closed yesterday at 6pm with nominations of candidates expected to end on October 16.

The onus now is on you the voter to go through the process that should culminate with a choice at the polling booth. It is about making that vote count.

The challenge is on you the voter to decide what you want, and who you should vote for.

That means appreciating what the different political parties and aspiring candidates have to say.

There must be time set aside to get to understand party manifestos and what the various political opinions on pressing issues are.

There must be critical analysis of the calibre of candidates contesting the elections, what they can offer and most importantly whether they can gain the confidence of the masses.

You must ask questions if you are in doubt. It is important that you are aware of the candidates who are seeking your vote.

As we now count-down the days to November 14, you as a voter can be a catalyst for change.

There will be differences of opinion, however, at the end of the day, let us never forget that we finally have the processes in place that can allow many positive things to happen.

The Speaker of the House of Parliament Dr Jiko Luveni made interesting comments yesterday.

While urging members of the public to exercise their voting rights and choose a leader they want, Dr Luveni urged people to first of all cast their vote. “Of course elections have to do with (political) parties and what they promise to do.

So I would like to encourage the people to vote for their leaders.

Parliament belongs to them so they decide who is to sit in Parliament and they must have a role to play in that,” she said.

Now that we have the process in progress, The Fiji Times plans to be right there, disseminating news we hope will enable voters to make well informed decisions in the lead up to the polls.

It is a duty our journalists and photographers on the frontline, and our team in the background are challenging themselves to perform to the best of their abilities.

The 2018 election beckons!

More Stories