THE AUDITOR General's Department (AGD) has found that the country's much acclaimed electoral body does not have an effective system in place to routinely verify the age or date of birth of persons seeking to become registered voters.
In a report tabled in Parliament yesterday, the AGD said applicants were not routinely required to provide proof of age at the time of registration.
In its information systems review report of the ECJ, the AGD says the absence of an effective age verification system increases the risk of registering underage applicants as legitimate electors. "This also reduces the reliance that can be placed on the identification cards produced by the commission that are used as de facto national IDs," the department added.
An analysis of the adjusted 2011 voters' list revealed that there were 48 electors without a date of birth at the time the list was put together. "We were, therefore, unable to determine if those electors attained the prescribed age at the time of registration."
Head of the AGD Pamela Monroe Ellis said a review of the adjusted November 2011 voters' list showed that 133,845 electors were flagged as having bad prints, bad photo or missing information in the Elector Registration System (ERS).
The report said another 3,137 and 2,922 electors were flagged as having wrong fingerprints and no fingers respectively.
However, the ECJ did not have a mechanism in place to target high risk groups such as electors for re-verification in order to determine authenticity.
The AGD also found that the ECJ's dead electors processing procedures did not take into account any death data from the Registrar General's Department, as required by the Representation of the People Act.