15 Mar 2018

Call for voting to be compulsory in Vanuatu

4:18 pm on 15 March 2018

The Head of Vanuatu's Women Against Crime and Corruption organisation has congratulated Port Vila's three municipal women councillors on winning their seats.

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Photo: 123RF

Jenny Ligo made the call in the Daily Post newspaper after the Electoral Office confirmed that the majority of the 31,000 registered voters did not cast their votes.

She wants the government to amend the Electoral Act to make voting compulsory.

Mrs Ligo said voters had to appreciate that the government declared the day a public holiday for every voter to go to vote.

According to the newspaper, the poor turnout has been attributed to registration of voters and also because voting is not compulsory in Vanuatu.

In other countries, it is compulsory.

For Vanuatu, the constitution gives people the right to decide whether they wish to vote or not. Even though they have a duty, but the right of each individual as recognized under the constitution is also there.

In order to sort of this out, the Electoral Office needs funding, every time a submission is made to the MBC, it is always refused over so many years now.

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