Statement by the Supervisor of Elections Mr Mohammed Saneem
11 December, 2017 9 am
FEO HQ – SUVA
Fiji National University, Vice Chancellor Professor Nigel Healey, welcome to the Fijian Elections Office. It is certainly a pleasure having you, I also want to say that as far as University engagements go we are very proud of our engagements with the Fiji National University.
Time and again we meet on various developments and I’m looking forward to this new engagement through the Fiji National University Alumni Association elections.
The MOU that we sign with the FNU Alumni Association is following the approval by the Minister under section 154 of the Electoral Act for the FEO to be able to conduct elections for the Alumni Association.
I’d also like to acknowledge and thank the Fiji National University and the Alumni Association for its confidence in the Fijian Elections Office to conduct its election and the MOU sets the platform on how we will proceed from here.
Ladies and Gentlemen, because this is the Alumni of a University it would be a good platform for us to use Electronic Voting machines. Earlier on we advertised widely that that Electronic Voting machines are only for small-scale elections, Trade Union Elections and University Elections and I’m grateful to the Alumni Association for accepting the offer to conduct elections using these Machines.
We will be conducting this election for the Alumni Association in January, and I understand that the association will now embark on a massive registration drive so that they are able to engage as many FNU Alumni as possible.
With the rich and vast history of the Fiji National University, this will be a tremendous task to register members.
Ladies and Gentlemen, we also wish to say that we use small-scale elections to test and perfect our election processes and the Alumni Association election will also present us another platform to do this. The Fijian Electoral
Commission has approved a theme, ‘Raising Your Standards in the delivery
of Elections in Fiji’ and with the University elections and other elections that we conduct, we certainly use this as an opportunity.
The Association of World Election Bodies (AWEB), in its engagement with Fiji has invited Fiji to consider if it wishes to host a regional training centre on elections. This will be an AWEB initiative in the Pacific Region and the Regional Training centre will be a platform for AWEB to progress technology in elections, and to progress capacity building in elections in the whole region.
I would definitely look forward to discussions with Professor Healey in terms of the possibility of having FNU as our key partner in becoming this crucial hub for the Pacific region for AWEB.
This year we ran the second Student Association election for the Fiji National University Students Association and we look forward to continuing this partnership with the Student Associations. It is an interesting area for us as these are the future generations of the country and giving them an exposure to good election practices is what we are all about.
I would like to congratulate Industrial Election Coordinator Mr Aisea Wainiqolo and his team for adding another one to the list. They have run about two hundred elections, the Association election will be the first for 2018 and I’m sure that his team will be prepared to run this.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I would like to thank Professor Healey and Mr Netani Sukanaivalu and his team, the FNU staff as well as the entire Alumni for their faith in the FEO to conduct your elections. I look forward to enhancing this very fruitful collaboration in the future under the MOU.
Thank You and Vinaka Vakalevu.