Political Parties Still to Collect Voters’ Roll

WITH only four days to go before elections, political parties are still to collect the voters roll from the Electoral Commission of Namibia (ECN).

ECN spokesperson Vikitoria Hango told The Namibian yesterday that the commission had informed all political parties two weeks ago to collect the voters’ register.

“I do not know why they have not collected them yet, but they were all informed,” she said.

Tony Nkosi, secretary general of the Republican Party, admitted that they have not yet collected theirs, quickly adding that they planned to do it last Friday.

“I had sent someone to collect it on Friday, but they did not manage to do so,” Nkosi said adding that ECN also informed them late.

CoD president Ben Ulenga said although his office has been alerted to collect the voters’ roll, his party has not picked it up.

“I gave instructions that they collect it on Monday (today). We need to scrutinize it while there is still time to make comments,” Ulenga said.

DTA president McHenry Venaani complained to Southern African Development Community (SADC) election observers on Saturday that the ECN has not yet provided his party with the voters’ roll.

Speaking at his party’s final star rally in Windhoek at the John ya Otto Stadium in Wanaheda on Saturday, Venaani said it was unacceptable that six days before elections the ECN has not yet given out the voters’ roll. “This is a recurring matter for each election year. ECN, don’t make us start to doubt the process. Please deliver,” he urged.

Even though the voters’ roll was inspected some time ago, political parties need to have it on hand to double-check details of the registered voters, and also the total number per constituency.

In the past the voters’ roll provided to parties had shown discripancies in terms of registered people.

He also told the observers that ruling party members often destroy campaign posters of opposition parties, saying this does not in any way reflect free and fair elections as defined by a democracy.

Seventy-four election observers arrived in Namibia last week.

Venaani has also once again urged Namibians to go to the polls and vote for his party. Although this was the DTAs last official star rally, Venaani urged the party’s supporters to go out and mobilise people, saying it’s never over until it’s really over.

He said his party is witnessing ger support as it has already surfaced internationally, pointing out that in Malaysia and England the DTA came second after Swapo in the votes cast on 14 November by seagoing voters and at Namibia’s foreign missions.

Venaani said Namibians should go to the polls to vote for a better Namibia and not for a political party.

The Director of the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) Graham Hopwood said ECN had refused them permission to scrutinise the voters’ roll.

He said his organisation wanted to give the voters’ roll an extra check but the ECN said they were only obliged to provide it to political parties.

Source : The Namibian