Martin Tete, chairman of the election: Polling at Point Cross in doubt

By Jonas Cullwick

The Electoral Office is assessing the situation of violence in South Pentecost to see if the polling station at Point Cross, South Pentecost, can be moved to another village or area to allow registered voters of the polling station to be able to cast their ballots without fear for their lives.

This is after people of three village in the area including Point Cross are reported to have fled to other village north including Ranwas and Pangi and even as far as North Ambrym for fear for their safety from the row over land that has left one person dead and gardens destroyed.

The Chairman of the Electoral Commission Martin Tete says the Electoral Office is trying to get the Registration Officer for the area, Donald Wayback, to direct them as to where to relocate the Point Cross polling station if need be to allow voters there to cast their votes.

He said 590 people are registered to vote at Point Cross polling station, 780 at Ranwas, just north of Point Cross where people from the inland village of Bunlap also vote, 770 vote at Pangi further north and 380 at Bay Barrier the last village right at the southeastern end of Pentecost.

Chairman Tete said most of the police deployment for Penama for the provincial elections will be based at Point Cross to help ensure people there are free to vote on election day for Penama Provincial council on March 23. Elections on the same day will also be held at Malampa, Shefa and Tafea provinces.

Jonas Cullwick, a former General Manager of VBTC is now a Senior Journalist with the Daily Post. Contact: jonas@dailypost.vu. Cell # 678 5460922

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