Categorized | National News

Former PM To Observe Vanuatu Elections

Former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham, will lead a Commonwealth Observer group to the Republic of Vanuatu for its general elections on January 22..

The snap election is being held nine months ahead of schedule, following a period of political instability in which 14 Members of Parliament were convicted of bribery.

The convictions led to a political deadlock between the government and the opposition which prompted President Baldwin Lonsdale to dissolve parliament.

The Commonwealth’s Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma mobilised the observer group at the invitation of the Vanuatu government.

He said its work would complement the Commonwealth’s ongoing effort to support democracy in the country.

The observer group will contribute to this process by offering practical recommendations to strengthen Vanuatu’s electoral process based on their observations.

The five-member team will examine pre-election preparations, voting and counting procedures and the announcement of results.

They will assess any factor affecting the credibility of the elections and determine whether they were conducted according to international standards and the laws of Vanuatu.

The observer group will submit its report to the commonwealth secretary-general, who will in turn send it to the Government of Vanuatu, the electoral commission and the principal political parties.

It will subsequently be released online.

This is the second time since leaving office in 2012 that former Prime Minister Ingraham has been tapped to lead a Commonwealth Observer Team.

Back in 2014 he chaired the team that observed Mozambique’s elections.

Those elections were seen as pivotal in that country’s history given that it had only recently prior to those elections signed a peace agreement.

Vanuatu is an archipelagic nation in the South Pacific Ocean.

The country has a population of an estimated 272,000 people…

Written by Jones Bahamas

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