Australia to print, pay for PNG ballot papers

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Australia will print, and pay K10 million (US$2.8 million) for the 12 million ballot papers to be used in the 2022 general election, according to Electoral Commissioner Simon Sinai.

In addition, India will provide, and pay K5 million (US$1.4 million) for the indelible ink used during polling, he said.

Sinai told The National that Australia was supporting the Electoral Commission by printing and providing the ballot papers costing around K10 million (US$2.8 million).

The Australian Defence Force aircraft will transport the printed ballot papers to PNG in May.

“Australia wants to assist us with the ballot papers.

“They will be printing and bringing the papers to PNG.

“There will be about 12 million ballot papers printed – six million for the open electorates and six million for the provincial or governors’ seats.”

He stressed that the 12 million ballot papers were for two different seats.

“I want to make that clear,” he said.

He explained that the indelible ink used during polling to mark the fingers of those who had cast their votes “will be brought across and provided by the Indian government”.

“Last Friday, I signed off on all the papers (which) went through diligent checks and according to the requirements, needed to have the papers printed and the ink provided,” Sinai added.

The papers will be brought to the country in May by the ADF and dropped off around the country, he said.

He said the commission was preparing for the issue of writs in April and was updating donor agencies, diplomatic corps, New Zealand, Australia and the United States on “our election preparedness”.

“Our election is a global issue and election management is about managing election around the world.

“When it comes to the PNG election, they (donor agencies) are party to this election.

“The world is watching. Communications continue and they are putting their hands up,” he said.

SOURCE: THE NATIONAL/PACNEWS