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No need for ballot serial numbers: Saneem

 

Apr 26, 2022 01:30:52 PM

No need for ballot serial numbers: Saneem Supervisor of Election Mohammed Saneem says a ballot paper is not a receipt.

Saneem's comment comes after the Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry called for ballot papers to have serial numbers.

In a press conference, he said the calls are just to dupe voters by proposing something which was relevant for accounting but against the principles of fair elections.

“Every citizen who was 18 years had the right to be a registered voter and to vote by secret ballot in any election or referendum under this constitution,” he said.

“Around the world, current constitutions and electoral laws also underline how voting has to be secret, and how often, however, without specifying the means to do so.

“The secrecy principle is an absolute concept, the ballot is either secret or not. A credible ballot paper reconciliation account was not possible unless the papers were numbered,” he said.

He said the secrecy of the ballot is paramount, an individual should not be able to trace a ballot paper back to the person who marked it. 

“As I have said to the political parties in the meeting that I held with them and to the woman’s forum, a ballot paper is not a receipt.

“A receipt is where you need to be able to trace back to the person who made that payment. In the election world, it’s a completely opposite situation.

“You should not be able to trace a ballot paper back to the person who marked it, otherwise, why have elections. Just have a show of hands system,” he said.

Saneem said any suggestions that would compromise the secrecy of the ballot will not be entertained.

By Nacanieli Tuilevuka

 

 

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