Candidate: It is a conspiracy!

A candidate contesting the North Waghi seat in Jiwaka Province alleges that there is a “conspiracy” to favour the sitting MP in the 2017 National Election.

A frustrated Michael Bandui made this allegation following Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato’s decision to disqualify only one of the five boxes which were tampered with by supporters of a candidate. The incident was captured in a video and posted on Facebook.             

Bandui said the evidence is very clear and all the six ballot boxes should be put aside.

The video footage showed supporters of a particular candidate in the North Waghi electorate, filling in their preferences on the ballot papers.

Gamato, in a media conference on Monday in Port Moresby, said: “According to observations by the State Legal Team for Jiwaka, for the first six disputed ballot boxes, there is some form of evidence in the form of amateur video footage for only one ballot box, which is for Kendu 1 polling place.

“The boxes from these polling venues of Bolba 1, Bolba 2, Tolu 1, Tolu 2, and Kendu 2 will be counted.

“For the other five ballot boxes, the grounds for objections remain as allegations because there is no evidence to verify them,” Gamato said. 

The incident happened at PNG Defence Force Singirok Barracks during polling.

Charles Yapumi