|Ballot boxes in the 2006 election|
It expects to recruit up to 1050 individuals to be part of the Electronic Voter Registration Team with applicants being told to send their papers to the Acting Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice and Anti- Corruption.
But the SDL Party leader, Laisenia Qarase, says the recruitment of Voter Registration Clerks directly by the illegal attorney-general’s office is improper, and raises the question of independence of the election process from the beginning.
"The Voter Registration is an important first step in the election process," says Qarase. "This task, including the recruitment of Voter Registration Clerks, should be carried out by the Office of the Supervisor of Elections under the direct supervision of an independent Supervisor of Elections."
Qarase says the regime should re-establish an effective and independent Office of the Supervisor of Elections.
"Such an office should be independent from any Government Ministry, subject only to a relevant Minister regarding its reporting requirements and budgetary provisions. A qualified Supervisor of Elections who will command the respect and trust of the people of Fiji should be appointed immediately. The entire election process including the recruitment of staff must be handled by the Supervisor of Elections."
It was clear some time ago Khaiyum would 'oversee' the elections and as we pointed out last week, he is now being called Elections Minister without any formal notification the 2014 poll will come under his office.
The question must be asked: how does the regime expect voters and critics to believe the elections will be fair if everything is being done by the corrupt office of Khaiyum?
Editor's Note: The SDL Party had its first gathering yesterday since April 2009 because of fears it wouldn't be able to meet after issues with a permit. Qarase says it was the first of many meetings being planned as the party prepares for the constitution consultation process starting from May.