14 Oct 2005

Fiji Electoral Commission discusses voter registration issues with Labour leader

11:10 am on 14 October 2005

The chairman of Fiji's electoral commission has admitted there have been imperfections in voter registration but dismisses allegations of deliberate irregularities.

Graham Leung says he met yesterday with the Labour party leader Mahendra Chaudhry to discuss a range of issues on the capacity and the institutional strength of the elections office.

Mr Chaudhry has recently made allegations about a deliberate attempt to disenfranchise voters in Indian communal constituencies, as well as the disabled and elderly.

Mr Leung says that while Mr Chaudhry didn't discuss his latest allegations of a Government vote-buying scam with him, any credible allegation will be looked into.

"I've had a meeting with the leader of the opposition, giving an assurance that where there have been anomalies that have been proven, the elections office would certainly do its utmost to regularise registrations but as far as a broad or wholesale allegation of systematic attempts to disenfranchise people is concerned, that remains unproven."

Graham Leung says the Commission is open to suggestions on how voter registration can be improved.