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Port Moresby
June 21, 2021
News Southern Your Vote 2017

NCD: Smooth Polling at One End and No names on the other

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For some parts of the city, voting was smooth and calm. The polling station at Aviat in Moresby South Electorate was calm as voters stood in line to cast their votes. Lines were short and the crowd was not as rowdy.

As for the polling station at Bagita Barracks, there were a few frustrated voters who had already been to one or two other polling venues. A lot of complaints were received from voters that their names were not registered on the common roll even after they registered themselves.

For most they felt that this was their chance to make a difference by casting their vote and demonstrating their democratic right. A lot of them seemed frustrated that they were being sent away by polling officials.

At Waigani Police Station, a rowdy crowd erupted when the presiding officer made the announcement at midday that voters can vote even if they don’t find their surnames on the electoral roll, or if the surname is there but the first names don’t match.

This decision by the Presiding Officer caused confusion amongst voters.

When asked why the announcement was made, the presiding officer, James Willy said that he had 800 ballot papers and time was running out, and the lines were getting shorter as most of the voters were being sent away because their names were not on the list.
Other mothers who claimed to be illiterate let the male folks they were with write the box numbers of all three of their preferred candidates on their hands for them to show polling officials when they go in to cast their votes.

Security Officer at Waigani Police Station polling centreVoters discussing who to vote for at Waigani Police stationVoters at Waigani Police Station Questioning Presiding OfficerVoter at Koki/Wanigela Polling Centre Checking for his name on Electoral Roll

 

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