Court Date Set For Hearing Cook Islands Election Petitions

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6 contested results to be heard starting on September 1

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, August 19, 2014) – Six petitions challenging the Cook Islands' election results will be heard by the High Court in September.

The Cook Islands Party won a majority of 13 seats in last month's election but the Democratic Party claims bribery and ineligible votes have skewed the results.

Last week the Democratic party paid its final installment of security fees to the High Court for its petitions bringing the total cost to just over 38-thousand US dollars.

It had originally lodged eight but its Akaoa candidate, Nooroa Baker, withdrew his petition because he could not guarantee anonymity for his witnesses.

The court is yet to decide on whether the petition for the tied seat in Mitiaro will be heard.

The Cook Islands Party withdrew it's only petition for the Murienua seat after it realised its claim of ineligible voters would not change the results even if it was upheld.

The hearings are scheduled to start on September 1 and are expected to take two weeks.

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