PNG's Election Commissioner Dismisses Claims That Election Had Failed

Gamato pledges to resolve common roll problems by 2022

By Sharon Lowa

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, July 7, 2017) – Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato has labelled the 2017 National Election as a very good election.

Mr Gamato said there are not many issues as incidents of serious nature that would allow for the election to be taken as failed election.

He said it may be premature and he could not find any grounds to fail this election.

He said the commission was serious about addressing the biggest issue of the Electoral Roll which had failed a lot of voters in casting their votes.

‘‘The Electoral Commission would look at the roll and update it to allow for smooth election in 2022,’’ he said.

Mr Gamato said the 2012 rolls were used as base roll and when the rolls were updated this year, the 2012 rolls were then used as the preliminary roll that was used to advertise for the voters to check their names.

He said some people managed to check for their names but most did not, and thus the rolls were not updated according to the current voting population.

He said there was a process used in updating the rolls but, this was still a big issue and the EC would address the matter after the election. He said East New Britain is not the only province experiencing the issue, it is nationwide.

Mr Gamato is confident that all polling and counting should be done well before July 24, and any activity after that date would amount to a failed election.

PNG Post-Courier
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2022? The roll could have been corrected and updated way before 2017. I remember prior to 2012 elections, EC officers visited communities and business houses to ensure citizens were registered to vote. some of us still did not have our names on the roll after that and had difficulty voting than. This could have been polished up in the 5 years between 2012 and 2017. What happened?

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