Patilias Gamato

Gamato welcomes US envoy’s comments

He said this following a TV interview in which the Ambassador commended the Electoral Commission.

Ebert-Grey said there was less violence, there was good logistical planning, and she noted the initiation of separate lines for women and persons living with disability.

She also urged the Government to urgently work on improving the electoral roll – a year around process - and said the United States has had similar problems.

Gamato said that a review of the roll will be done immediately after the elections.

Gamato refutes bias claims

The comments were made by incumbent Member for Sinesine-Yongomugl, Kerenga Kua, following the declaration of PNC candidates, Jame Marape (Tari-Pori), and Justin Tkatchenko (Moresby South) recently.

Gamato said the statement made by Kua in one of the dailies was incorrect and wanted to rectify any misconceptions.

“In some of my earlier press statement, I said if electorates that have completed their polling, they can allow for two to three days for preparations and go straight into counting.

​Five-day buffer for return of writs

Electoral Commissioner, Patilias Gamato, says the Organic Law on Election allows 21 days of counting but they only asked for 16 days for this election.

If counting in some areas is not completed by the return of writ deadline, which is July 24th, Gamato said they will advise the Governor-General to extend for the full 21 days as required under law.

Investigation into illegal ballot paper marking

This was announced by Electoral Commissioner, Patilias Gamato, after seeing the amateur footage shown on TVWAN News yesterday.

The incident occurred in North Waghi at the Singirok Barracks where ballot papers were marked outside of the legal electoral process.

The boxes in question are for Kendu 1 and 2, Tolu 1 and 2, and Bolba 1 and 2.

Gamato said what transpired was inappropriate and was not democratic, and has already instructed that the ballot boxes be set aside.

VIDEO: PNG Electoral Commissioner July 14th address

This is Loop PNG’s LIVE broadcast from the PNG Electoral Commissioner’s Press Conference currently taking place.


Electoral officers urged to work diligently

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato reminded electoral officers about the crucial role they play.

However, Gamato thanked all the PNG Electoral Commission staff stationed at the counting venues for their hard work and dedication.

“There will be petitions and disruptions by candidates and scrutineers but the election managers must handle these actions with the legal officers provided to them to keep the election process moving.

“I’ve issued this instruction to all election managers and assistant election managers,” Gamato said.

Gamato appeals to scrutineers

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato appealed to the scrutineers to do their job properly and understand their role in the process.

Gamato explained that in some places, counting has been significantly delayed after scrutineers raised objections.

He highlighted that scrutineers must understand that under the organic law, they are allowed into the counting centres to scrutinise.

Moresby South writ presented to Gamato

Returning Officer Michael Are presented the writ to Gamato this morning in the presence of declared and returning MP, Justin Tkatchenko.

Gamato commended Are and his officials for ensuring that counting took place and concluded quickly.

He also urge other returning officers around the country to do the same.

Gamato also congratulated Tkatchenko, saying the people of Moresby have unanimously voted to keep him as their representative.

Gamato confident counting will be completed on time

Gamato says with the rate counting is going so far, he is confident it will be completed in the two weeks period before the return of writs on July 24.

Gamato said they expect more declarations towards the end of the week.

“I hope more declarations can be done soon and the writs can be returned before July 24.

“We will still allow the counting process to go ahead for those electorates that are behind schedule,” Gamato explained.

VIDEO: PNG Electoral Commissioner July 12th address

This is Loop PNG’s LIVE broadcast from the PNG Electoral Commissioner’s Press Conference currently taking place.