Electoral Commission

Directives issued to Electoral Commission

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato delivered this to provincial election bosses at the Electoral Commission’s 3rd National Workshop in Port Moresby.

It has been established that the elections for the Local Level Governments will take place next April.

Among the directives, is that the 2018 LLG election budget of K100 million be revoked and a new budget be set.

The decision from the NEC to reinstate funding for LLG elections is so the budget for 2018 will be removed and according to the decision, K150 million be budgeted for the LLG elections.

Commission given 18 months to implement directives

The Government has now put together a commission comprising of senior officers from the Electoral Commission, CLRC Secretariat and Members of Parliament to review the Organic Law on National and Local Level Government Elections.

The Commission will be led by CLRC Secretary Dr Eric Kwa.

The Commission staff under the leadership of Secretary Dr Eric Kwahas has been given 18 months to deliver the Constitutional Directives.

EC unprepared for trial

The case, which was set for trial today, was further adjourned to Wednesday to allow the Electoral Commission to file the necessary documents.

Lawyer representing the Electoral Commission told Court that they are having trouble obtaining the documents requested by the petitioners.

The documents are locked up in a container.

They consist of the 364 presiding officers’ journals, list of polling schedules, forms 66 A and B showing the 34th and 35th elimination and the list of presiding officers.

K2.39 million needed for recount

Funds are needed by the commission to run the recount within the timeframe given by the National Court to avoid being in contempt.

Budget submissions have been put to the National Executive Council and the Inter-Department Election Committee.

The Electoral Commission told this newsroom K1.3 million is needed to conduct recount for the Central Bougainville seat.

The National Court gave two months from January 30 to do the recount.

Today, March 5 was the date the court ordered for recount to commence; it should end on or before March 17.

EC requests funds for recount

Commissioner Patilias Gamato is out of the country but has submitted a budget request to the Chief Secretary, Isaac Lupari, who is also the chairman for the Inter-Departmental Election Committee (IDEC).

A budget has been drawn up and given to the IDEC, who will liaise with Treasury and Finance to allocate funds for the recount exercise.

Given the timeframe ordered by the National Court for the recount to be carried out, Commissioner Gamato has requested for funding to be made available as soon as possible.

Ensure safe return of SHP ballot boxes: Court

Justice Collin Makail ordered the Electoral Commission to ensure the safe return of the ballot boxes back to Mendi. They were moved to the Mt Hagen Police station following disputes in Mendi town over the prolonged counting.

The orders were issued after two petitions that were filed disputing William Powi’s declaration went to court today for ruling regarding a motion Powi filed.

Yama asks court to refer questions

They filed a motion before the Court of Disputed Returns in the petition that was filed by retired Defense Force commander, Major-General Jerry Singirok, in the 2017 election over the Madang Regional seat.

They asked the National Court to refer questions for determination surrounding the qualification of election runner-up, James Yali, to nominate and stand for election.  

The court told them to draft the proposed questions and have them filed in court this week before the matter returns tomorrow (Friday).

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Electoral roll update to be decentralised

The decision to decentralise the electoral roll follows post-election evaluation undertaken by the Electoral Commission.

The post-election evaluation identified some of the challenges and issues the Commission went through in hosting the 2017 National General Elections.

Key recommendations from local and international observers were also considered, prompting the Commission to decentralise the updating of the electoral roll to the provincial level.

Tkatchenko asks court to dismiss petition

This is the first seat that was declared out of the four in the nation’s capital and now the first to go for trial in the Court of Disputed Returns before Justice David Cannings.

Petitioner Samson Kirilyo is challenging Tkatchenko’s election based on the scrutiny process of the Electoral Commission.

The trial commenced with the hearing of two applications, or objections, challenging the competency of the petition.

Tkatchenko’s objection was based on a requirement in the actual filing of the petition.