In preparation for the 2017 National General Election, the PNG Electoral Commission (PNGEC) did its electoral roll update for voters in the nation’s capital.
The exercise ran for 14 days, starting on November 30, with an extra 7 days in case of emergency or necessary security issues.
However, community leaders have claimed that the common roll update exercise, carried out for almost three weeks, has failed due to very poor planning, ineffective implementation and insufficient time allocation.
The leaders, in a letter to Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato, stated: “As leaders on behalf of the people residing in the suburbs and settlements, we strongly raise our collective voices to bring this to your attention.”
Local businessman Michael Kandiu said the timeframe allocated for the entire roll update exercise was simply insufficient, taking into consideration the city’s high population.
Community leader Boni Igime added that Port Moresby’s population has boomed since the last common roll update and the insufficient period allocated has doomed the entire update exercise to fail.
They called on the Electoral Commission to extend the timeframe of the activity to allow more eligible voters in Port Moresby to confirm their names on the common roll.
They recommended the Electoral Commission to use the traditional method of door to door census updating instead of setting up enrolment locations where people don’t turn up.