Monday, April 15, 2024
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EC concerned with delay in glitch probe

Electoral Commission chair Barbara Malimali says Fijians are still waiting for answers on the infamous “glitch” that took the nation by surprise during the counting of votes in the 2022 General Election.

Malimali in a statement said the Commission at its meeting yesterday discussed the likely consequences of the continued delay especially since we are now into the second year of Fiji’s election cycle and with Local Government Elections looming.

Malimali stated that the implications of this delay are of serious concern to the Commission.

“We understand that the Government has its processes to follow. However, it is now
nearly a year since the FEO took this matter up with them, and the public deserve
answers. Every day, every week, and every month that we wait for an investigation to
be done is costing the country in unnecessary rent as the ballot boxes have to be
stored,” said Malimali.

She said the continued delay in finalising the election audit will have other repercussions.

“Not only that, it will leave the Fijian Elections Office (FEO) with insufficient time to
undertake registration for the municipal elections which the Government wishes to hold
in a few months, and the political parties insufficient time to campaign. It will give us
very little time to reach out to women to encourage them to come forward as
candidates.”

Malimali added that a key goal of the Commission in conjunction with the FEO, is to
rebuild public trust and confidence in the electoral system.

“The continued delay in undertaking an independent audit is not helping us to rebuild
that trust with our main stakeholders, the people of Fiji.”

Ilaitia Ravuwai
Ilaitia Ravuwai
Journalist | news@fijilive.com

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