Speaking from Irupara, Chief Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato says the exercise is the first since formally launching the nationwide Electoral Roll update last month at Kwikilla station, Rigo District.
The Roll update in Hula and Irupara signifies the start of the program nationwide.
He explained that the exercise in Hula was also conducted as an insight for their donors and stakeholders on the capabilities of what the current PNGEC administration can do.
The Electoral Roll update exercise will go on for a period of seven days in Hula, Irupara and the nearby wards in Kalo and others.
The Electoral Commission is aiming that by September 2016, the Electoral Roll update should reach all provinces across the country.
Before the exercise, a two-day level two training for the Enrolment Agents was conducted in Kemabolo.
It was deemed a success as the Agents conducted the enrolment exercise very well and speaking from the exercise, an overwhelmed Returning Officer (RO) Virgil Waisa stated that they are planning the next level two trainings for Central and Inland Rigo.
The 2nd level trainings were held at:
- Central Rigo on August 16 – 17 and;
- Inland Rigo on August 18-19, 2016.
Waisa was pleased with the turnout at Irupara and Hula and urged all citizens to make time available to register as enrolment is compulsory, as stated in the Organic Law of the National and LLG Elections.
Gamato, in his speech, also made mention of a five-day workshop to be held in Lae on August 22 to 26, 2016.
This workshop will see election managers and assistant election managers trained as TOTs for the Enrolment Roll update. They will then go back to their provinces and train their ROs and AROs who will then train the Enrolment Agents, he stated.
Gamato clarified that this cascading training process is in line with the “decentralisation of the roll” concept which the Commission is undertaking for the 2016 Electoral Roll update.
Meanwhile, Gamato was pleased to announce that the PNGEC has signed 18 MoUs with 18 provincial governments, with talks underway for New Ireland, Western and Gulf provinces to sign theirs in the coming months.
“With the budget cut to K63 million after a proposed K400 plus million for the roll update, it was very overwhelming to see provincial governments supporting PNGEC and signing MoUs to carry out the Electoral Roll updates in their respective provinces,” he said.
(File picture showing Chief Electoral Commissioner, Patilias Gamato, second right.)