The Parliamentary Elections Office has dismissed claims, made by the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), that the names of some people on the voters’ list are being transferred from one constituency, to another.
In response to this, Voter and Civic Registration Officer, Ferdinand Phillip, is appealing for good sense to prevail, to avoid generating ill feelings among the voting population.
Phillip told the Government Information Service (GIS) that there are legitimate instances, where voters’ names can be transferred to another constituency, but impartiality and competence are maintained at all times.
“In any constituency, persons are allowed to – if you are a Commonwealth Citizen and you have resided in Grenada for a period of at least 1 year, 12 months unbroken – you can get registered. Now, ideally, you are asked to present your passport – your valid passport – which will show that you have been in the country for those 12 unbroken months. However, we do have persons, who are living in Grenada, for more than 12 months,” said Phillip.
“We are guided by the legislation and the legislation states that, in the absence of that, an affidavit, from a Justice of the Peace – and that is a legal document – will suffice. You know, it states the person’s age; it states that the person has been living in that particular locality, for such and such time, and it states their date of birth. Once those things are there, we cannot refuse to register a person and, if such a person then requires a transfer, we have to do it.”
Phillip is appealing to the Grenadian public to educate themselves, before making statements that can place the Electoral Office and its procedures in a negative light.
He said, “If persons would read the law, they would be aware that these are legitimate cases that were done within the confines of the law and, so, we want persons to know that there is a process. If you realise that you suspect that someone has been registered and maybe they didn’t have the proper document, or maybe they registered in the wrong place, or whatever, or maybe they were transferred to another locale and you don’t agree with it, then make an objection. The law again makes provision for that.”