Scandalous and an act of extortion
Thursday 13th February 2020
The decision by the Fijian Elections Office for all voters to produce birth certificates for voter re-registration is scandalous and extortion of money, said National Federation Party Leader Professor Biman Prasad
Professor Prasad said while the policy for new eligible voters to produce birth certificates was acceptable, for the existing crop of more than 644,000 voters to produce birth certificates is simply ridiculous.
“There is no need for even a married woman to produce her birth certificate. Every other institution like Fiji National Provident Fund accepts the marriage certificate which they already would have acquired upon marriage as the official identification”.
“Why is the Supervisor of Elections so insistent that all voters will have to produce their birth certificates? Why the rush?”
“Why has an independent office suddenly changed its role into a revenue generator for this cash-strapped government?”
“For argument’s sake if every current registered voter has to produce his or her birth certificate and doesn’t have one, he or she will have to pay around $15 to extract a new one”.
“This would raise $9.66 million”
“But that aside, this is simply extorting money. A current voter is already registered. There have been no incidences of voters using fake identification or voter impersonation in the last two elections.”
“Why is FEO treating voters as fraudsters and compelling them to re-register and produce their birth certificate?
“We ask the FEO to change its decision because it is immoral and unethical to financially burden our voters already struggling to sustain their livelihood”.