NEWS

We’re Set: Goledzinowski

The Multinational Observer Group will  ensure that the September election is carried out in a credible and transparent manner. MOG co-ordinator Andrew Goledzinowski made this commitment during a press briefing
27 Aug 2014 05:13
We’re Set: Goledzinowski
Hundreds of Hindu devotee gathered at My Suva Park in Suva to Mark the final ritual of Ganesh Utsav (Lord Ganesha prayer) on September 12, 2019. Photo: Ronald Kumar.

The Multinational Observer Group will  ensure that the September election is carried out in a credible and transparent manner.

MOG co-ordinator Andrew Goledzinowski made this commitment during a press briefing yesterday.

Mr Goledzinowski said the observers would work according to what was required of them in the terms of reference of the observers which had been agreed to between all the participants and the Government.

“Our job is to make sure that it is transparent and accountable. You have 15 countries invited and they are taking it very seriously, we are taking it very seriously. Our credibility is much on the line as the credibility of the election process so we sink or swim together. I can promise you that everybody involved in this process from our side will be making sure that we do the best job that we can for Fiji,” Mr Goledzinowski said.

“I think it is best characterised as there have been three main objectives. The first is to assess whether the elections have allowed the Fijian people to boldly represent their will and that’s captured in the first article of the terms of reference.

“The second and this is something that is very important to the Government and they would like the MOG to provide a recommendation going forward on how future elections can be improved in terms of their integrity and effectiveness.

“Thirdly, this is not in the terms of reference but I think it really goes to the heart of these sorts of observer’s activities, it’s about providing confidence, it’s not just about the international’s confidence in what is happening in Fiji it’s about providing some level of confidence to the Fijian voting public that in fact this election will be as good as it can be in terms of its integrity and effectiveness.”

The MOG would be made up of 15 countries and the other four countries that would be co-leading the group are India, Indonesia, Australia and Papua New Guinea.

He said he was unsure about how many members would make up the observer group.

“And of those four countries Fiji has suggested that Australia should provide a coordinating role so it is in that capacity I am the Observer co-ordinator.”

Mr Goledzinowski also confirmed that the observers would be deployed across Fiji from this week because they wanted to be as broad as they could by reaching out to everyone out in the rural and maritime areas.

“I think everyone will have to see that we are doing our best to make sure that their impressions, their views and their experiences somehow are reflected in our report, that’s in term of the long term observers. The short term observers which will have a larger number will begin to arrive around the 13 and 14 of September.

“We intend to have a comprehensive training day on the 15 of September and they will be deployed to as many polling stations as we can.”

Meanwhile, the terms of reference for the observers required them to produce two reports following the conclusion of the September poll.

The first, Mr Goledzinowski said would be in a form of a press statement that would be released a day after the election while the second one  which should be a written report would be produced two months after the elections as per the European Union guideline.

He added that they would also be meeting with all key stakeholders before the election commences.

Feedback:  aqela.susu@fijisun.com.fj

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