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Fijian Elections Office On The Roll For 2018 Polls

Fijian Elections  Office On The Roll For 2018 Polls
Editorial
June 20
11:00 2017

Our General Elections are to be held in 2018, which is not too far off.

It is encouraging to see the Fijian Elections Office out there in full force – in Fiji, out in the region, out abroad registering new voters and updating information of current voters.

And, the transparent manner in which they are going about their business is most reassuring.

The Fijian Elections Office (FEO) no doubt learnt lessons from past elections, which were held by a Supervisor of Elections who would be appointed in the year of a general election.

Having a dedicated team working for and with the FEO under the leadership of Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem gives a continuity to the preparatory process leading into the general elections.

Since the 2014 General Elections, the FEO team have not been idle. Far from it. They undertook a mammoth task while conducting the 2014 General Elections – a task they excelled in.

But, that is not all. Conducting trade union elections and even student elections as seen during the elections of the Fiji National University student association gives these elections credibility.

Just last month, 35,433 Fijians were served in the current Nationwide Registration Drive.

As at Wednesday May 31, 2017, the FEO has:

  • Registered 3113 new voters.
  • Corrections – 4140
  • Replacements – 11,107
  • National Register of Voters Updated – 3799
  • National Register of Voters Confirmed – 10,784
  • Total Engagement with Voters – 35,433

This drive continues till July 1 where we have got to do our part too.

There are, no doubt, Fijians who have had their residential addresses changed amongst other details. We have to take the initiative to reach out to the FEO and update our information.

The other major step the office took towards the general elections has been the SMS service which they launched last month.

The ‘SMS Notification Feature’ has now been incorporated into the Voter Registration system. 2502 voters who had either registered or updated their details between January 2017 and March 20, 2017 and had provided the FEO with their mobile numbers would have received a ‘confirmation’ SMS advising them of the registration.

The ‘SMS Notification Feature’ will allow the FEO to confirm to voters in terms of their registration as a Voter. The system will also send an SMS to a voter when the voter updates their details.

The system will also SMS a voter to advise the voter that their VoterCard has been replaced.

In terms of security, voters will now have access to information about the activity on their Registration and in the unlikely event that unauthorized activities took place, the Voter can raise queries with the FEO.

The SMS Notification feature operates on both the networks in Fiji and is a free of charge service.

Such strides have been made by the Fijian Elections Office and boost the public’s confidence in their ability to hold the general elections transparently.

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Jasa Veremalua
Fiji Rugby 7s rep

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