election petition

Simbu residents want recount venue changed

They have camped outside the Police station, preventing the Electoral Commission from moving the ballot boxes to Lae for counting.

The people of Simbu are yet to receive an official response from Electoral Commissioner, Patilias Gamato, from a petition they presented last Monday, demanding the change of recount venue from Lae to either Jiwaka, Goroka or Mount Hagen.

The National Court ordered the recount to take place outside of Kundiawa town. Disgruntled supporters presented a petition to the election manager in Kundiawa, demanding the change of venue.

Fiji opposition leader Rabuka says court’s election petition decision 'deeply disappointing'

SODELPA, with the National Federation Party, had presented the petition, challenging aspects of the election process.

They planned to call eight witnesses but the court approved only two.

The parties then withdrew the petition.

Mr Rabuka said it was a decision not taken lightly.

He said the parties believed all eight witnesses were crucial to establishing the grounds for the petition.



Hamiya’s Hela petition dismissed

Justice Ellenas Batari was of the view the grounds presented by Dr Hamiya had no merits.

Dr Hewali Hamiya raised issues in the petition regarding conduct of the election and the lack of scrutiny provided by the Electoral Commission.

He alleged other irregularities of the conduct of the election, like hijacking of ballot boxes, use of excess ballot papers’ errors and omissions; and that the Electoral Commission provided poor scrutiny on the conduct of the election.

Court dismisses Dekena election petition review

A three-man Supreme Court bench heard the review on June 27 and dismissed the review today for being incompetent.

The full court found that there were additional grounds, filed in the substantive review.

Those grounds were not included in the leave stage of the review.

Justice Ambeng Kandakasi said challenging an election result is serious and the onus is on the petitioner to get the pleadings right, failure to do so has resulted in the dismissal of many good petitions.

Wosera-Gawi petition dismissed

Justice George Manuhu dismissed the petition on Friday at the Wewak National Court.

Joseph Yopyyopy won the Wosera-Gawi seat with 10,822 votes while Francis Baindu, the first runner-up, collected 7,896 votes.

With a difference of 2,926 votes, Baindu filed the petition on seven counts of bribery.

Only two counts of bribery proceeded to the substantive trial which commenced early this week at the Wewak National Court.

Pini seeks Supreme Court review

The petition was dismissed on May 28 after trial.

Justice Collin Makail dismissed the petition earlier because the petitioner, Pini, failed to establish that polling was compromised by the setting aside of six ballot boxes.

He has since filed a review in the Supreme Court.

An application seeking leave to review the dismissal will be heard in the Supreme Court on 9 July at 3pm.

Another Supreme Court review arising from an election petition that went for directions today before Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia was the North Fly petition.

NCD regional petitions dismissed

The National Court dismissed Andy Bawa and Michael Kandiu’s petitions, stopping it from advancing to full trial after it failed the test of competency.

Both election petitions claimed that Parkop’s declaration was done before he attained an absolute majority.  

Kandiu complained on the lack of proper scrutiny however, the National Court saw that he did not demonstrate that the results of the poll were likely to be affected.

Potape’s petition back for trial

A three-man Supreme Court bench reinstated the case for trial in the National Court.

Out of the 79 petitions filed disputing election results last year, Potape’s petition is the first to be remitted to the National Court after a successful review by the Supreme Court.

It was dismissed on January 24 as it was found to be incompetent. The National Court saw that essential facts that should have been pleaded to support the two grounds of the petition were not stated.

Petition against Maru dismissed

Petitioner Peter Wararu Waranaka challenged Maru’s election on six main grounds: 22 counts of bribery, undue influence, errors and omission, illegal practices, irregularities and forgery.

Waranaka was seeking a recount in the petition.

The matter went before Justice Ambeng Kandakasi for hearing one objection to competency motion, filed by Maru.

Maru’s lawyers put to court the petition was filed outside 40 days’ requirement and was incompetent. 

Dei open petition dismissed

Justice Collin Makail dismissed the petition today because the petitioner, James Pini, failed to establish that polling was compromised by the setting aside of six ballot boxes.

On 8 May, the National Court found the petition competent with valid grounds for trial.

Petitioner James Pini alleged the election was compromised when the returning officer refused to admit six ballot boxes for counting, thus affecting the election outcome.