An estimated 800,000 people have dropped off the electoral register since the government introduced changes to the system, with students in university towns at highest risk of being disenfranchised, the Guardian has learned. Labour says it fears that the missing sections of the electorate are predominantly its supporters after the government moved from registration of electors by household to asking individuals to sign up, citing fears of fraud and error. The estimated number of voters registered in December – the first figure under the new individual electoral registration system – is lower than in the previous year, with just months to go before May’s local, assembly and mayoral elections.
Following the decision of the ruling parties to push on with elections in April 24, and amid concern that the opposition may boycott the polls, three separate teams comprised of IT experts are to cross-check the data to determine who is alive and in the country and so eligible to vote. “Two teams are to be engaged of competent local IT companies, and one of international companies,” the head of the election commission, the DIK, Aleksandar Cicakovski, said. The data on voters will be taken from various institutional registers, starting from the Central Bank, the Health Fund, the Employment Agency, the Cadastre Agency, the Public Revenue office and others.
Voters in Vanuatu go to the polls on Friday for a snap general election called after 14 government MPs were jailed for corruption. A total of 264 candidates, standing in 52 seats, have had little more than seven weeks to campaign. Most are members of 36 political parties, many of which have formed in the lead-up to the election. There are still more than 50 independents in the mix. Observers have said one of the issues with the snap poll was that there were thousands of dead people still eligible to vote — some reports claiming as many as 55,000 registered voters were no longer alive.
Niger has completed changes to its electoral register recommended by the International Organization of the Francophonie (OIF), the body said on Thursday, removing a major source of tension ahead of elections next month. President Mahamadou Issoufou is seeking another mandate as head of the historically turbulent, uranium-producing West African country on Feb. 21. He is the favorite to win but critics say he has become increasingly authoritarian and repressive ahead of the polls. The OIF, an organization representing French-speaking nations tasked with overseeing the voter list, had previously recommended the removal of around 300 ‘ghost’ polling stations and 25,000 voters counted twice.
Niger’s electoral register is good enough to enable the country to go ahead with an election on Feb. 21 as long as certain changes are made, the International Organization of the Francophonie (OIF) said in a report on Monday. The changes include getting rid of around 300 ‘ghost’ polling stations and 25,000 voters who have been counted twice, said the organization. President Mahamadou Issoufou is running for a second term and is favorite to win but critics say he has become increasingly authoritarian and has unleashed a campaign of repression before the polls.
The electoral commission of Ghana will not be compiling a new voter list to be used for the November 7 general election, despite calls by the main opposition, New Patriotic Party (NPP) to do so. Backed by other opposition and some civil society groups, the NPP petitioned the electoral commission, saying it has evidence that the current voter list is bloated with minors and non-citizens. The opposition party maintains the credibility of presidential, parliamentary and local elections will be undermined if the current voter list is not discarded and a new one compiled. The electoral commission had appointed an independent panel to look into the NPP’s concerns.
The electoral commission of Uganda has issued the final voters list for next year’s general election to all participating presidential candidates and their parties. The country’s electoral law demands the electoral commission present an electronic copy of the voters list to the parties and their candidates after the nomination process. Two weeks before the presidential, parliamentary and local elections, the law requires the electoral commission to issue a paper copy, also called a hard copy, to the candidates.
Georgia: Improper release of voter data prompts outside audit of state agency | Atlanta Journal Constitution
Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp plans to hire top auditing agency Ernst & Young to review his technology department in the wake of a data breach that exposed private information of more than 6 million voters. In a statement sent out after 6 p.m. Friday, Kemp also acknowledged a “similar but more limited” incident occurred in October 2012. According to emails obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution through an open records request about that incident, 12 voter registration lists containing sensitive personal data were sent out to people in 15 counties. But Kemp’s statement said “all of the information was recovered at the time.” News of the most recent incident became widely known Wednesday, when the AJC wrote about a class-action lawsuit alleging a massive data breach in the Secretary of State’s Office.
Election officials in Myanmar are still struggling to finalize the nationwide voter list as the nation heads to the polls on Sunday. The Union Election Commission (UEC) had initially announced it intended to release the final list on November 2. But the head of the Yangon Region Election Commission, Ko Ko, told VOA Burmese Tuesday the plan was delayed due to technical difficulties. He said hundreds of thousands of eligible voters have been added for the nation’s largest city. He added that the final list for the Yangon Region is expected to be posted later this week. “The total number in the previous list was 4,180,705 and the final voter list now tallies some 4,960,000, meaning that [the number of] eligible voters in the Yangon Region increased by about 800,000,” he said.
Myanmar’s first final, nationwide voter list was slated to go on public display yesterday, but after months of outraged political parties and voters calling election officials to task, most will have to wait at least another day to see the final roll. The Union Election Commission had initially planned on publicly posting the final list on November 2. The schedule was revised and extended to a last-minute, staggered release that would start at the local election office and progress to the township, state and Union level, where it would be combined and cross-checked. The relevant lists were also supposed to be posted at each polling station on November 6 and 7. Widespread voter list omissions, redundancies and inaccurate data plaguing the last two lists have proven a contentious and central obstacle in the coming election. While the final, corrected renditions were supposed to start rolling out yesterday, Myanmar Times reporters posted around the country found varying degrees to which local offices succeeded in meeting the deadline.