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Electoral Office of Jamaica steps up election preparedness

Published:Friday | May 8, 2015 | 9:06 AM
In this file photo a Jamaican votes electronically.

As the two major political parties begin readying their election machinery, the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) says it is working feverishly to also tweak its polling system in the event an election is called.

Local Government elections are constitutionally due this year.

On Monday, the electoral body received more than $130 million to acquire pieces of equipment used during an election.


Debbie-Ann Wright has more in this report

Director of Elections Orette Fisher says the EOJ has received $130 million and is expected to receive another tranche later this month.

Fisher says some of the equipment used over the last 15 years in the polling process were in need of replacement.

He says the electoral body had submitted a budget to the Government for funding to purchase new equipment for the Electronic Voter Identification System.

Fisher pointed out that if an election were to be called without the EOJ acquiring the necessary pieces of equipment; it would be seriously challenged to effectively preside over the polls.

However, he explained that on-the-ground preparation was being done including the identification of the counting centres, polling locations and most of the workers.

He said the EOJ has already trained the trainers for elections.

Meanwhile, Fisher said $1.7 million voters are on the voter’s with a new list scheduled to be published at the end of this month.

At the same time, the head of the EOJ said there were plans to clean the voters’ list by having a new enumeration exercise or resident reverification process where the houses of each person on the list are visited to verify that they live there.

He said the cost to carry out this exercise is two billion.