Samoa’s Elections Office to restart pre-polling process

The Office of the Electoral Commissioner in Samoa will restart the national pre-polling process.

This follows complaints from some voters that candidate committees were inappropriately approaching them.

According to the Elections Office, there were complaints about candidate committees using the completion of application forms, to induce voters.

“The OEC sees this as a real threat to the integrity of pre-polling process and has decided to suspend accepting anymore pre-polling forms.

The Electoral Commissioner, Faimalomatumua Mathew Lemisio said it is important to ensure the integrity of elections is not compromised, and voters not made to feel threatened or enticed.

“The elderly, those in essential services including media, those travelling on the week prior to Election Day and persons with disabilities can all apply to pre-vote”.

Faimalomatumua said the OEC will restart the whole process, including previous applications received.

“We will go to those voters who have already lodged their forms an restart the process”, he said in response to questions from Samoa Global News.

The OEC has created a different official pre-polling form, which is being distributed to eligible voters from today (Monday)

Eligible voters will be advised of a schedule of the distribution of pre-polling forms later this week.