THE ELECTORAL Commission of Jamaica (ECJ) has rejected as premature suggestions that the use of the Electronic Voter Identification and Ballot Issuing System (EVIBIS) contributed to the low voter turnout recorded in the December 29 general election.
In a release yesterday, the ECJ said it welcomed all comments and criticisms aimed at pointing out weaknesses and ways in which the electoral system could be improved, but said the commission felt obliged to point out that it was erroneous and at best premature to suggest that the system was to blame.
Christin Senior, public education officer at the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ), has admitted that the system was slow, but reiterated the ECJ's position that it was premature to lay blame for the turnout.
"The ECJ is not rejecting the suggestion. We are just saying that based on the evidence so far, it is premature to make that claim," she told The Gleaner yesterday.
The ECJ in its release said, "Citing preliminary results on the recent general election, the ECJ said it shows that the percentage voter turnout in the polling stations using EVIBIS technology was in line with the national average of 53 per cent."
According to the commission, six constituencies, which used EVIBIS in all polling stations, recorded higher voter turnout than the national average.