29 Jun 2012

Sepik candidates petition to counter PNG vote rigging

2:25 pm on 29 June 2012

A group of election candidates in Papua New Guinea's West Sepik province has petitioned the Electoral Commissioner for extra help in countering vote rigging.

The group is made up of 14 candidates, some of whom are contesting the Vanimo Green seat against the caretaker deputy prime minister, Belden Namah.

The Green Party's Dorothy Tekwie says their group, the Alliance for Free and Fair elections, was prompted into action because of threats made against their campaigns by Mr Namah's associates.

She says they have made specific requests to the Commissioner:

"Including transparent counting and the inclusion of Australian and New Zealand Defence Force in assisting with the transportation and protection of the ballot boxes. we have expressed our concern because the ballot boxes have arrived late. And in this particular electorate we have potential for vote-rigging which has happened in previous elections."

Dorothy Tekwie