Writ can be issued any day: Fiji’s Election Supervisor

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The writ for Fiji’s 2022 General Election can be issued any time from today onwards.

This is according to Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem as the national voter registration drive comes to an end last Saturday.

Saneem said over 55, 700 Fijians have registered during the national voter registration drive that started in August, raising the total to 560,000 registrations nationwide.

“The speaker of Parliament has adjourned the Parliament sine dine this means that Parliament will not be sitting anymore and a writ for the election can be issued any day from today onwards.”

The Supervisor of Elections is encouraging those that haven’t updated their voter cards to go to any of the Fijian Elections Office registration centers to get registered before the writ is issued.

Meanwhile, as preparations get underway for the 2022 General Election, keeping the public informed will be critical.

The Fiji Elections Office will be monitoring media reporting to ensure accurate and critical information is being disseminated to the public.

As part of the FEO’s media watch and analysis of coverage in the lead-up to this year’s election, Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem said there are mechanisms in place to provide clarifications and ensure the information is correct.

He said these include holding press conferences, going LIVE on Facebook for the public to watch the full announcements, issuing press statements and answering queries by the media.

Saneem said the FEO is also providing training to the media.

“We also have mechanisms to assist the media with clarifications. Sometimes the media goes back and they ask some questions to understand the story better before they publish it and lastly the Fijian Elections Office does scrutiny of the reporting.”

The Fijian Media Association (FMA) said it has no issues and supports the decision by the Fijian Elections Office to have a media watch and analysis of coverage in the lead-up to the election.

The FMA said the media continues to strive for accuracy and balance and where it has fallen short, it will take responsibility.

In another development, Freedom Alliance Party has been de-registered as a Political Party after the request for voluntary de-registration by the majority of its office holders was received Friday.

Supervisor of Elections, Mohammed Saneem states the request was made in accordance with section 19(7) of the Political Parties (Registration, Conduct, Funding & Disclosures) Act, 2013 [“Act”] which states:

The Registrar shall deregister a political party if the majority of the members of the political party apply to the Registrar for voluntary deregistration of the political party.

Saneem said noting that the majority of the office holders of the party have signed and submitted a written request for voluntary registration in accordance with section 19(7) of the Act, Freedom Alliance is hereby de-registered.

SOURCE: FBC NEWS/PACNEWS