Hundreds of New Zealanders holding Fijian passports are reported to have registered their names to vote in the Fiji general election due to be held on September 20, 2014.
The second round of registration process concluded in Auckland on May 24.
Elections officials from the Suva based Fiji Election Office were in New Zealand to enable voter registration in Auckland, Hamilton, Rotorua, Palmerston North, Whangarei, Wellington, Roxburg, New Plymouth, Wanganui, Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill.
Harish Lodhia, Fiji’s Honorary Consul in Auckland said that the target was 1000.
“All Fijians holding Fijian passports were eligible to register their names to be able to cast their vote in the September 20 election. Since a number of people travel regularly to Fiji, it is possible that they registered their names in their home country. The forthcoming election has generated widespread interest among the members of our community,” he said.
It is understood that similar registration facility was available for eligible voters residing in Australia, Canada, Dubai, European Union countries, Papa New Guinea, United Kingdom and United States of America.
At press time, about 551,000 persons had registered their names to vote. The total population of Fiji is about 875,000 including those not eligible to vote.
Fijians with Fijian passports who have not registered so far may file an ‘Expression of Interest’ on the website of Fijian Election Office (www.electionsfiji.gov.fj).
The website mentioned that all Fijians must have a valid Fijian passport to register and that expired passports can be renewed on completion of the prescribed procedures.
“Submission of this expression of interest will not count as registration.”
The names of all registered voters will be entered into The National Register of Voters. It is available for inspection by the members of the public at all Permanent Registration Centres located throughout Fiji. Fijians who have already registered to vote are encouraged to visit one of these Centres to verify the accuracy of voter details.
Online verification is also available.
According to the Fijian Election Office, the following parties have been registered.
Fiji First (Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama) Fiji Labour Party (led by Mahendra Chaudhary); National Federation Party (Dalip Kumar); People’s Democratic Party (Adi Sivia Qoro) and Social Democratic Liberal Party (Pio Tabaiwalu).
One Constituency, One Person, One Vote, One Value
Fiji’s Honorary Consul in Auckland Harish Lodhia (extreme right) with registered voters displaying their ID cards at Pacific Business Centre, Papatoetoe on March 25, 2014