PUP and Chief Elections Officer Continues Back and Forth over Proxy Register

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Updated: November 2, 2015

Yesterday we told you of the letter that the PUP sent to the Chief Elections Officer, Josephine Tamai, asking for consistent monitoring of the Proxy Register up until Tuesday, November 3.  This letter came a day after Tamia had already responded to a previous letter from the PUP, giving them a set schedule as to when they can come in to access the Proxy Register.  But that set schedule did not seem to meet the PUP’s requirements and so another letter was fired off with a demand that Tamai responds by midday today.  Sure enough, Tamai has responded in a three page letter.  Tamai reiterated, quote, “As mentioned in my previous letters to you, due to passage of Statutory Instruments No. 24 of 2008 which was signed by the Right Honorable Said W. Musa on 31st January, 2008 and gazetted on 2nd February, 2008, the time frame for submission of proxies to the Elections and Boundaries Department has been deleted from the Representation of the People Act. “  End of quote.  The letter went on to read, in part, quote, “Additionally, the People’s United Party is fully aware that candidates are given twenty four hours before the opening of the polls to submit to the Returning Officer, their appointments in respect of their agents.  The means candidates have up until 7am on 3rd November, 2015 to submit their appointments of agents to the Returning Officers.  The Returning Officers can only then thereafter submit the information to the Elections and Boundaries Department.  It is not until then that the department will be able to go through the listing to ensure that t No Agent is allowed to vote by proxy, in accordance with Section 19 (2) € of the Third Schedule of the Election Rules with states, a person who is an agent for any political party shall not be entitled to be appointed as a proxy.  As a result, your demand to provide the final Proxy Register on or before 10am on 3rd November 2015 is unreasonable knowing that the department must abide by the laws of Representation of the People’s Act and allow persons time to submit their proxy for approval to the Elections and Boundaries Department.”  End of quote.