Just how bad the voting fraud is was revealed in numerous articles in today's National and Post Courier newspapers. Up to 40,000 votes are reported to have been hijacked in Hela, covering at least 4 electorates and many more polling locations. In at least 12 locations boxes and ballot papers were hijacked by people who proceeded to mark the papers themselves. In 3 areas the election was conducted by electoral officials who were not appointed by the electoral commission. All these are initial reports and Governor Agiru notes that ther might have been many more areas where votes were hijacked. Naturally he was most concerned about vote hijacking in his stronghold areas. In Ialibu Pangia 6 candidates have expressed their unhappiness with a process that Peter O'Neill's supporters used to keep them unknown to the voters, specifically that nearly all the pollilng officials had been compromised in some way. Bribery is the suspicion.
In the Imbonggu open of Southern Highlands, Former provincial administrator Pila Niningi was found to have in his vehicle at least 1,000 copies of the updated preliminary common roll of the district. What Niningi was planning to do with documents that were illegally in his possession is not hard to figure out although he admitted under police interrogation that he had paid people in the PNGEC for the documents. Another Imbonggu candidate Tony Undi was caught red handed destroying ballot boxes.
In Bougainville serious issues of ballot papers without the required serial numbers showed up, suggesting the use of counterfeit ballots to inflate votes. As was true elsewhere in the country, large numbers of Bougainvilleans found that their names had mysteriously disappeared from the common rolls.
In Kokopo, a candidate's supporters was caught red handed giving out money for votes.
The extent of voter fraud in the nation has now worried candidates in the NCD which are scheduled to vote today. As Margaret Loko, an NA candidate for the NCD regional seat said, double-voting and bribery could easily be happening in NCDC too.
Meanwhile, in response to widespread vote hijacking throughout the country, Michael Somare has raised concern over unofficial ballot boxes belonging to outgoing MPs in different parts of the country, used to change legitimate votes. "This is the start of a terrible trend in the country and should not be tolerated. I call on the Ombudsman Commission and the Office of the Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates to investigate this issue and immediately disqualify those members of parliament from contesting the elections."
Widespread discrepancies in the voter rolls was also reported, and Luther Wenge said that the Morobe provincial government is considering taking the government and the Electoral Commission to court over the incomplete updating of the common roll. The same complaints were voiced in many parts of Madang province. PNGEC sent out common rolls to be corrected, the corrections were made, but apparently none of the corrections were entered. All this was predicted, that voter rolls would be purposely corrupted throughout the nation. But the PNGEC didn't listen, instead spending their efforts to try and cover up their total incompetence and perhaps corruption.
In the midst of the concern of the level of vote fraud that is taking place, Belden Namah said he was confident of winning his Vanimo-Green seat for the second time with a first count win of 20,000 votes.
Why would Mr Namah be so confident in view of what is unfolding throughout the nation?
Again it was all forecast but the PNGEC did nothing to stop the problem from occurring. Even yesterday, Electoral Commissioner Andrew Trawen didn't seem to know what was going on and could not confirm reports about candidates using fake ballot papers and boxes. Worst yet, when asked to comment on the disaster in SHP and Hela Provinces he said ,"the overall outcome of polling int those provinces was satisfactory."
Obviously, Trewan doesn't consider the hijacking of up to 40,000 votes a problem! And the adverts are still running daily in the newspapers about "no multiple voting" and the use of indelible ink while reports are surfacing everywhere of easy ways to remove the ink and vote again.
Went to vote at hohola today only to discover näme not on list. Funny thing is I was not the only one with no name. What happened to the so called electoral updating with so much focus. I agree there is another failure of election at our doorsteps.
Every elgible Tom, Dick and Mary were given the opportunity to enrol. It is not entirely the sole responsibility of the Electoral Commission to enrol voters. It is also incumbent upon us (the voters) to make sure our names are on the common roll so we can take part in this process of exercising our constitutional and democratic right.
Haven't you been reading the stories? All over the country people are complaining that they DID have their names added to the common roll when the drafts were sent out and posted. But the electoral commission "couldn't be bothered" to actually make the revisions, they just pretended they did.
And the rest is history.... the most fraudulent PNG election ever!
It was obvious that PNG and PNC parties with ONeill and Namah were going to spend whatever money it took to try and buy this election. The disaster is now unfolding. They corrupted the voter rolls, they paid off electoral officials to look the other way, some of their candidates straight out went and stole ballot boxes.
None of the results can now be trusted, almost everywhere in the country. THE 2012 ELECTION IS UNFOLDING AS A CORRUPT FAILURE.
Mr Namah said he had facts to back up his argument in that in his own Vanimo town urban wards, the electoral rolls there were in shambles. “More than 5000 to 6000 eligible voters’ names were not on the electoral rolls. This is an urban/town ward. You can expect worse going into the rural districts in the electorates,”
More and more corruption stories about the election
June 29 2012, 5:01 PM
Friday 29th June, 2012
Claims against Parkop denied
By Melissa Martin
NATIONAL Capital District Governor Powes Parkop last night denied allegations of being involved with police who are said to have tried to hijack ballot boxes for the Moresby South – Regional seat.
Mr Parkop explained that the Reserve Police unit under the spotlight was sanctioned by the Police Commissioner Tom Kulunga before the end of last year to assist NCD Police in NCD to fight lawlessness in the city.
His response comes after Ambassador Aiwa Olmi and candidate for the Regional seat alleged that a police officer (named), attached to National Capital District Commission allegedly led city rangers and a band of reserve police officers to work with him to manipulate the election process by conduction illegal police force operations in the province.
Claiming to be speaking on behalf of the other 25 candidates, Mr Olmi said the police officer was originally from the drug squad in NCD who was employed by the NCD Governor Powes Parkop five years ago as his security.
But Mr Parkop denied the allegations made by Mr Olmi, saying this would tarnish the good work performed by these police unit in the city and added that they had been very active during the Christmas festive season.
“The unit has also been very active during Christmas and the political impasse recently and have performed very well,” Mr Parkop said last night.
“They get orders from the NCD Police Commissioner and not from me or the city manager. I am not aware of any illegal activities being carried out by them. Their job is to back up regular police force in carrying out their police normal duties and is not here to protect anyone’s interest.”
Ambassador Olmi’s information, however, alleges that four months ago, the police officer (named) led the city rangers to stop vendors selling betelnuts at public places in their effort to keep the city clean.
“These people have joined forces and have all dressed in police uniforms to hijack ballot boxes so we are calling on the Police Force to identify and disband the unit,’’ Mr Olmi said.
Around 12 midday yesterday, it was also reported that some people with police issued uniforms walked into Gabutu Don Bosco Technical Institute (DBTI) where the Moresby South boxes were kept and attempted to remove the boxes. A blue Toyota Land cruiser registered as CAY 323 was spotted with two other vehicles loaded with the so-called police personnel at the premises of DBTI, trying to remove the boxes.
The 2012 National Elections Security Operations Commander Francis Tokura has been called to immediately investigate and disband the illegal police unit, operating from the City Hall.
On behalf of the other 25 candidates contesting the regional seat, Mr Olmi said the illegal police set up needed to be disbanded before the counting of the ballot because it was a threat to the election process.
“To conduct free, fair and safe elections it has come to our knowledge that some strange things are happening at the NCD City Hall,” he said.
Mr Olmi has written to the Deputy Police Commissioner of Operations Simon Kauba to immediately investigate and disband this police unit to allow for fair counting of ballot papers.
“All of us, the candidates, the voters, the polling officials and the security have to put our country first in this time of choosing our political leaders,’’ he said.
A POLLING team currently conducting polling in the Sinivit Local Level Government area in the Pomio District has attracted the ire of voters.
Polling team 28 which conducted polling in Sinivit since last Saturday has been queried of its actions after officials conducted polling within the premises of a campaign manager for a well-known candidate.
Yesterday, the polling team moved to the residential area of Oscar Peter campaign manager for Francis Koimanrea who is contesting the Pomio Open seat to conduct polling.
Voters, who turned up=, questioned why the polling team was conducting polling just a few metres away from Mr Peter’s house.
Many argued that it was not right for the polling team to conduct polling within the premises of campaign officials or candidates and questioned the legality of the actions and motives of the polling team in question.
Voters were puzzled at such a move, saying that polling team 28 should be investigated and called on the presiding officer to justify why they conducted polling in the premises of the campaign manager of the candidate.
They also called on the provincial election manager Terence Hetinu to look into this matter as it raised a lot of questions.
They also complained that the polling should be moved to a more neutral venue rather than at the premises of Mr Peter.
Voters have called on Mr Hetinu to look into the matter immediately, citing that such action by the polling team was very suspicious.