In doing so, the Bougainville Referendum Commission (BRC) has partnered with Autonomous Bougainville Government’s Department of Community Government to ensure all eligible Bougainvilleans were registered to vote in the referendum.
“It is our priority that all eligible electors are included on the referendum voter roll,” said co-chair of Bougainville Referendum Commission Transitional Committee (BRC-TC) and Bougainville Electoral Commissioner, George Manu.
“Through our partnership with the ABG Community Government department, we are ensuring that all eligible electors are able to participate in this democratic process,”
The referendum voter roll will be developed through a three-phased process in which the first phase involves ABG community governments to verify the 2015 ABG electoral rolls against ward voter registries.
Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato, who is also co-chair of the BRC-TC, said: “Phase one of the voter enrolment process is almost completed.
“What happens next is that ward recorders will go from door-to-door to ensure all eligible electors verify their enrolment details.
“Voters who have not been registered and new voters will be enrolled in their voting districts.”
Commissioners Gamato and Manu said during the second phase, eligible voters who were not able to locate their names on the working rolls or who have not previously enrolled must complete a “claim for enrolment” or “transfer” form.
They said in the third phase on voter enrollment, preliminary rolls will be publicly displayed for verification of the referendum voter roll.
Meanwhile, for inclusion in the referendum voter roll, an elector must be eligible to vote in ABG elections (18 years and above) and have resided in a voting district in Bougainville for a period not less than six months.
For Bougainvilleans living outside of Bougainville, separate initiatives will be undertaken to enable their participation in the referendum.
(Loop filepic of ballot boxes)