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Elections Office Plays Critical Role, Says Fiji National University Vice Chancellor

  The Fijian Elections Office plays a critical role because it must ensure that elections are fair and transparent. Fiji National University (FNU) vice chancellor Nigel Healey made the comments
12 Dec 2017 11:00
Elections Office Plays Critical Role, Says Fiji National University Vice Chancellor
Industrial Elections Co-ordinator Aisea Wainiqolo, the Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem, Fiji National University (FNU) Vice Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey and the FNU Alumni Association President Netani Sukanaivalu after the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding on December 11, 2017. Photo: Fijian Elections Office

 

The Fijian Elections Office plays a critical role because it must ensure that elections are fair and transparent.

Fiji National University (FNU) vice chancellor Nigel Healey made the comments when he signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem at the elections office in Suva yesterday.

Mr Healey said the office had come a long way since it begun to conduct elections in Fiji and it played a critical role in transparency, ensuring accurate voting.

He said FNU had two main groups in its institution, which included the FNU Students Association and the Alumni Association whose MOU was just signed.

“The students association was set up last year when Fiji Elections Office undertook elections of the student body whereby about 20,000 FNU students from across Fiji voted,” Mr Healey said.

“It is an important body and we were pleased the elections took place in a fair and transparent way.

“The FNU Alumni represents all past graduates of FNU and constituent colleges which go back to 1885.”

He said the MOU was critical for the institution because the Alumni Association maintained a close relationship with the institution itself and those elections took place in a fair and transparent way that alumni students could have confidence in.”

He added the second round of elections seemed timely to formalise the relationship through an MOU.

Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem said the elections office was looking forward to the new engagement through the FNU Alumni Association elections.

He said the MOU signed with the association following the approval by the minister under section 154 of the Electoral Act was for the elections office to conduct elections for the association.

Mr Saneem acknowledged FNU and the association for their confidence in the Fijian Elections Office to conduct its election and the MOU sets the platform on how they would proceed from here.

“Because this is the Alumni of a University it will be a good platform for us to use electronic voting machines,” Mr Saneem said.

“Earlier we advertised widely that electronic voting machines are only for small scale elections, trade union elections and university elections and I’m grateful to the Alumni

Association for accepting the offer to conduct elections using these machines.”

He said the association’s elections would take place in January 2018 and soon the association will embark on a massive registration drive so it was able to engage as many FNU Alumni as possible.

Edited by Percy Kean

losirene.lacanivalu@fijisun.com.fj

 

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