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Concerned Electoral Commission moving to woo voters after low election turnout

Published:Tuesday | March 8, 2016 | 3:35 PM
Electors wait to vote outside the Longville Park Early Childhood Centre polling station in Clarendon South Eastern on February 25.

The Electoral Commission of Jamaica (ECJ) is moving swiftly to implement programmes to address the high level of voter apathy among Jamaican electors, which it says has become a cause for great concern.

The statistics have shown that the number of people on the voters’ list today is almost one million more than the number of people registered in 1980.

However, despite this huge difference, only about 10,000 more people voted in the February 25 general election than voted in the 1980 general elections.

Chairman of the ECJ, Dorothy Pyne McLarty says despite the fact that the names of some people who have died or moved abroad need to removed from the list, the number of people who didn’t vote in the recent elections is still too high.

She says it is the immediate concern of the ECJ, and the body is already looking at what can be done to reverse the decline in voter participation.

Pyne McLarty says the ECJ will be ramping up its voter education drive and communication with Jamaicans.

She says as part of this push, the ECJ will be paying closer attention to social media.

 

Chairman of the Electoral Commission of Jamaica, Dorothy Pine-McLarty

Meanwhile, Pyne McLarty says she believes the interest generated by the closeness of the recent general election could also result in greater interest generally in voting.

She says she believes this could lead to an increase in voter turnout for the next election.

 

Chairman of the Electoral Commission of Jamaica, Dorothy Pine-McLarty