Tuesday, March 08, 2011

North Bougainville polls set for May 14



PNG Electoral Commissioner Andrew Trawen has announ­ced March 21 as the date for the issue of writs for the North Bougainville open electorate by-election in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville, The National reports.

It is to fill the vacant seat left by former North Bougainville member Michael Ogio, who is now the governor-general, and is expected to cost the state K2.6 million. 

Trawen, who was in Buka Island last Thursday to meet with the provincial election steering committee on preparations for the 2012 general election, said the by-election would take place as per the time sche­dule set by the commission.

“Following the issue of writs, close of nomination will be on March 28 with polling on May 14 and end on May 20.

“The return of writs will be on June 10,” Trawen said.

Bougainville electoral commissioner Reitama Taravaru said his office was prepared for the by-election.

“We aim to see a peaceful and democratic by-election. Despite the time constraints, I am confident it will progress at a comfortable pace,” Taravaru said.

Preparations by the Bougainville electoral team include training and awareness for groups who will be assisting in the by-election.

They include civil society groups, police, Leitana Wo­men’s Council and United church AIDS council.

“Due to the time constraints in preparing the roll before the issue of writs, we will be using the ABG electoral rolls used in the last election with village assembly clerks assisting to prepare the election roll be­cause of their local knowledge of the area and the people,” Ta­ravaru said.

Six assisting returning officers to be nominated by the PNG electoral commission will be assisting Taravaru, who will be the returning officer for the by-election.




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