20 Apr 2012

MPs concerns about electoral roll are genuine, says PNG academic

12:30 pm on 20 April 2012

A Papua New Guinea specialist in parliamentary democracy says MPs have well-founded concerns about the state of the electoral roll.

Pressure continues to build on the Electoral Commissioner, Andrew Trawen, from parliamentarians wanting the general elections deferred.

This is despite the Prime Minister saying that elections will go ahead as originally scheduled in June.

Several MPs have cited incomplete common rolls as having the potential to cause chaos in the Highlands region.

Mr Trawen insists the electoral rolls will be ready in time.

However Dr Henry Okole says the MPs believe there are holes in the roll that will not only affect them but the rights of voters.

"Every election in the past has had issues with the electoral roll so I suppose you can understand that it's not that easy for incumbent MPs or even some of the contesting or potential candidates to go by the word alone of the Electoral Commissioner if the history says something else."

Dr Henry Okole