9 May 2007

Election audit in Fiji reveals massive overprinting of ballot papers in last year's election

6:47 am on 9 May 2007

An audit of the Fiji general elections held in May last year has revealed massive overprinting of ballot papers.

Fiji TV reports that it has obtained a copy of the audit report which was carried out by the Auditor General's Office as part of its scrutiny of the finances of the Elections Office.

It shows that in the Fijian communal constituency there were 256,000 registered voters but 542,000 ballot papers were printed.

In the General communal constituencies, there were 13,800 voters but almost 62,000 ballot papers were printed or more than 4 papers for each voter.

For the 204,000 ethnic Indian voters, there were 450,000 ballot papers.

For the fewer than 5,400 Rotuman voters, there were over 70,000 ballot papers or 13 papers for each voter.

The auditor general's report says printing excessive numbers of ballot papers was a waste of public funds and indicates poor planning and coordination.

It does not offer any further comment but has called for further investigations.

Fiji's military has also alleged tampering with the election results and wants detailed investigations.