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Tonga hosts Strategic Planning for Electoral Management BRIDGE Workshop and PIANZEA Meeting

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8th February,2018 More than 20 delegates from around the Pacific convened in Nuku’alofa this week for the Strategic Planning for Electoral Management BRIDGE Workshop and the Pacific Islands, Australia and New Zealand Electoral Administrators Network (PIANZEA) Meeting, at Tano’a International Dateline Hotel.

The event is hosted by Tonga Electoral Commission aiming to ensure that elections in the Pacific are conducted in a free and fair environment independently and objectively.

Chairman of the Tonga Electoral Commission Rt. Hon. Lord Dalgety Q.C said, “We are here to network and all strive to attain best practice in election administration, as we adhere; to ensure the orderly conduct of local and parliamentary elections (and by elections).


He stated that the primary functions of an Electoral Commission is to provide a free and fair electoral process which requires dissemination of information to citizens, regular review of laws, ensure that policies are consistent with the changes in society and to adhere to the best practice at all-time.

“A particular task in this regard is voter registration. Voter registration is an on-going event. We must all strive to maintain an accurate and updated electoral roll. This is essential to maintaining the credibility and integrity of elections. Voter registration is a mammoth task considering the on-going movement of the population from one place to another and from one Pacific Island to another. This is our challenges, to succeed in capturing the maximum possible electorate”, he added.

Lord Dalgety Q.C told the gathering that after this week’s BRIDGE training and PIANZEA meeting, he is confident that they will face and overcome challenges together.


Australian High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Andrew Ford said, “No one country has all the answers, this regional approach of knowledge sharing and joint development enhances the ability of the Pacific Island electoral institutions to better conduct their elections and strengthens the prospects for stable democracies in our region.”

He said that this week’s full program of discussions will be touching on a range of critical issues including examining lessons learned from recent elections, planning for key elections in the region, the rise of social media and implications for electoral administrators.

ENDS

Issued by the Ministry of Meteorology, Energy, Information, Disaster Management, Environment, Climate Change and Communication

Last Updated ( Friday, 09 February 2018 10:28 )  

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