The issues identified at polling booths from both the North and South Ambenob LLG were;
• Polling officials were late to arrive at the polling booths at their respective locations, causing a delay for late start of polling. This led to less than 500 people to vote yesterday and many of the voters yet to vote.
• Polling officials at some of the polling locations did not have uniforms including vests. Their ID cards were too small for identification as polling officials.
• Open back vehicles were used by electoral officials to transport ballot papers and election materials to some of the polling locations and most ballot papers were transported late to Jomba police station for lock up.
• The Electoral Commission hired vehicles travelling late to pick up the ballot paper after polling. Scrutineers stated that Madang District polling team had only three vehicle to transport polling teams and the ballot papers. This caused the delay for polling.
• After polling, the ballot papers were brought to Jomba police station at night. The polling officials and the security personnel were using touch lights to assist them in locking up the ballot papers.
A concerned scrutineer said electoral officials and the security personnel were travelling in tinted vehicle and said this is not right. They want clear glass for transparency.
They further added that the polling officials were not assisting the people voting at the polling locations properly which some voters had been mixed up, putting the marked ballot papers into the wrong boxes.
“The last group to bring the ballot papers left Sek after polling was at 7.55 last night and arrived at Jomba Police station at 8.20pm and after the confirmation of the seals the last box for yesterday`s polling for North and South Ambenob was locked up at 8.33pm.”
The scrutineers said it is only the first day of the polling and many problems had been identified and they want the Madang`s election manager and the security manager to improve on that.
Meantime, some polling officials and the security personnel are yet to be paid their allowances and scrutineers are concerned that this might disrupt polling in the coming days.