FEO Begins Work On New Strategic Plan

The Fijian Elections Office [FEO] has commenced on a ‘Building Resources in Democracy,
Governance and Elections’ [BRIDGE] Training to develop its Strategic Plan for 2020 to
2024.

Supervisor of Elections [SoE], Mr Mohammed Saneem, says the aftermath of the 2018
General Election provides the best time to assess and plan ahead for the next election.

“Following the BRIDGE Training on Strategic Planning for 2020 to 2024, the FEO will commence the process to establish its long term goals, actions and objectives.”

Mr Saneem also adds that long term planning formed an essential platform in the success of all FEO activities as has been demonstrated by the 2014 and the 2018 General Election.

The BRIDGE Training will be facilitated by two senior staff of the Australian Electoral Commission [AEC] – Mr Brian Latham and Ms Jennifer Hammond, as well as co-facilitated by two senior staff of the FEO – Ms Asenaca Kolinivala and Ms Ana Mataiciwa.
The Multinational Observer Group has also commended the FEO for its dedication to long term planning:

The Fijian Elections Office (FEO) prepared for the election thoroughly, implementing a long-term strategy of improvement throughout the
electoral cycle. The FEO benefited from robust operational planning, staff
training and new technologies to improve the electoral administration and
enhance the transparency of its operations.
The MOG was impressed by the robust culture of strategic and operational
planning evident in the FEO’s preparations for the 2018 General Election as
well as the innovation of quality assurance teams monitoring progress. The
MOG also commends the FEO on the effectiveness of the FEO’s recruitment
and training strategies and the transparency of its operations. The FEO’s
capabilities bode well for the sustainability and cost-effectiveness of future
elections.

2018 Fijian General Election
Final Report of the Multinational Observer Group

“The Strategic Plan Development team will review the successes and shortcomings from the last Strategic Plan, as well as carry out consultations and research as the work on the comprehensive 5-year plan takes place. The FEO is looking at incorporating various internationally recognized platforms for good governance and business practices to ensure that we work better and smarter in this cycle,” Mr Saneem continued.

The BRIDGE Training will be held from 19 June to 21 June 2019.

-Ends-

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at
communications@feo.org.fj

Voter Services Centres Re-Open

The Fijian Elections Office [FEO] has reopened its Suva and Lautoka Voter Services Centres [VSCs] as of today – 18 March, 2019.

The Labasa VSC will open from 9am tomorrow – 19 March, 2019.

Director Corporate Services Mr Sanjeshwar Ram said the FEO is re-opening VSCs in the three locations to ensure voter services are available to all Fijians.

“These Voter Services Centres are not only for voters living in the particular locations, but for all Fijians from anywhere in the country. Whether you are resident in Suva, Lautoka or Labasa – or just passing through, please feel free to access our services.”

The Voter Services Centres provides the following services:

  1. Registration of new voters
  2. Update or correction of details
  3. Replacement of VoterCards

Fijians can also visit the VSCs to inform the FEO of deceased voters as well as other matters or queries related to the FEO.

The Voter Services Centres are located at the following addresses:

  • Suva – 10 Thomson St, GPO Building, Suva
  • Lautoka – 36 Vitogo Parade
  • Labasa – Legal Aid Commission Building, Old Courthouse, Jaduram St

The Suva VSC is open from 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 1pm on Saturday. The Lautoka and Labasa VSCs are open from 9am to 4pm on weekdays only.

The FEO also wishes to advise all registered voters that the VoterCards issued before the 2018 General Election are still valid.

-Ends-

 

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

VOTER SERVICES EXPANDED AROUND THE COUNTRY

02/03/2018

VOTER SERVICES EXPANDED AROUND THE COUNTRY

The Fijian Elections Office [FEO] has expanded its services around the country.

As of today, Voters Services are available at the following locations:

  • Sigatoka – Provincial Administrator’s Office, Talenavuruvuru, Sigatoka
  • Taveuni – Cakaudrove Provincial Office, Somosomo, Taveuni
  • Nabouwalu – Naulumatua House
  • Seaqaqa – Seaqaqa Assistant District Office
  • Tavua – District Office
  • Navua – Provincial Administrator’s Office
  • Ba – District Office
  • Keiyasi – District Office, Navatumali Government Station, Keiyasi
  • Korovou – Police Bure – Korovou
  • Levuka – Provincial Administrator’s Office
  • Kadavu – Provincial Administrator’s Office [Vunisea]

Supervisor of Elections, Mr Mohammed Saneem said the initiative is a bid to provide services in areas where the FEO did not have Divisional Offices or Voter Services Centres.

“Fijians, Voters or potential voters who wish to register or get their VoterCards replaced or, update their details can now visit any of these locations around the country to access Voter Services,” he said.

“We are making these services available now so that during Election time, no one faces difficulties in accessing services.”

Acting Director Strategic Development and Communications, Edwin Nand said Fijians will not have to travel far to access services as these office locations were closer to residential locations.

“It was an opportune time for the FEO to take advantage of the existing machinery to create an opportunity within that machinery for Fijians to benefit from Voter Services for the upcoming General Election whenever it may be held,” he said.

Details of the new Voter Services Centre locations are available in newspapers from tomorrow and also on website – www.feo.org.fj/voter-services-center/ and on the FEO Facebook page – @Fijianelectionsoffice.

-Ends-

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

Verification of Provisional Voter List commences

31/01/18

MEDIA RELEASE                                                                             

Verification of Provisional Voter List commences

The Fijian Elections Office has commenced the verification of the 2018 General Election Provisional Voter List through the use of the district advisory councilors and the Turaga ni Koro’s around Fiji.

Following a successful meeting with the Ministry of iTaukei Affairs and with the assistance of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of iTaukei Affairs, the FEO has begun distributing the Provisional Voter List to respective Turaga ni Koros so that they may be able to take it to their areas and verify against those who are present in those areas under the Voter List.

The FEO anticipates that this exercise may take up to three weeks and by the time the National Voter Registration Drive starts, the FEO hopes to have received all the Provisional Voter List back in order for it to be prepared to make necessary changes when teams visit the places on the ground.

The FEO will also shortly launch an SMS platform for Fijians to be able to text their voter number and verify their polling stations.

“We are still well in time to allow Fijians who may have now changed their residential address to apply to have their polling station details amended,” the Supervisor of Elections, Mr Mohammed Saneem said.

“This is to avoid any inconveniences on Election Day if voters do not change their venues in time.”

The Provisional List of Polling Venues for the whole country has also be published on the FEO website and is available at www.feo.org.fj/polling-venues and any Fijian who wishes to peruse this is invited to do so.

According to the Electoral Act, the last day for voter registration will be the date that writ is issued and as such Fijians have every opportunity right now if they have not been registered to take advantage of the registration platforms available at many of our Voter Services Centres around the country.

 -Ends-

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

Statement by Supervisor of Elections in response to Lynda Tabuya

30 January, 2018

We have this afternoon witnessed statements made by Lynda Tabuya who is no longer from PDP. Her press conference this afternoon is purely political and we question her motives at asserting the findings of the FEO towards other events concerning workers.

Lynda Tabuya must understand that FEO’s actions on PDP are purely on her own failures to follow the law and the PDP Constitution. This is clearly evident and not disputed by her.

We have once again noted that she completely fails in her understanding of the law and is surely misguided when she says that the SoE released minutes of the meeting on 07 December 2017. Members of the media are invited to check the press release of yesterday which only reveals the SoE’s findings and not any other matter.

The SoE clearly has the powers to make his findings publicly known when exercising public function such as the current case of requiring the PDP to comply with the law. Ms Tabuya has in fact revealed more about the 07 December 2017 meeting and the role of Felix Anthony in PDP than was found by the SoE.

The findings on the MoU of 07 December 2017 were made public. Following the receipt of additional information, it is found that this MoU signed by PDP did not have proper Constitutional authorization of the PDP Management Board.

It is hoped that Lynda Tabuya can understand the basis of the SoE’s decision in an objective manner. Of course we cannot comment on her obvious attempts at politicizing this matter to shroud obvious failures to comply with PDP Constitution and the Political Parties Act.

The FEO operates within the laws that created it and at all times ensures that public law action it undertakes has proper legal and factual basis.

-Ends-

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

Registrar uplifts suspension to facilitate Compliance by PDP

29 January, 2018

MEDIA RELEASE

The Registrar of Political Parties has this afternoon lifted the suspension of PDP to allow the PDP to comply with the Political Parties (Registration, Conduct, Funding & Disclosures) Act, 2013 [ACT].

“Following the receipt of various documents from the PDP, we have established that the officials had neglected and/or failed to ensure that they had properly implemented the requirements of the PDP Constitution in particular, in relation to the appointment of an acting President following the resignation of Lynda Tabuya so that the Party was able to duly comply with the requirements of section 11 of the Act” explained Mohammed Saneem Supervisor of Elections and Registrar of Political Parties.

“We have therefore lifted the suspension so that PDP can hold a proper Management Board Meeting as per its Constitution and then appoint various office holders who can then sign off on the application required under section 11 of the Act.”

The Registrar has in his letter to PDP today also made known the following findings:

  1. Meeting of Management Board on 07 December 2017

It is noted that the minutes of this meeting were recorded by (the now resigned) Lynda Tabuya (the then President) and not the General Secretary as required by the PDP Constitution. The Registrar notes that the Constitution of PDP requires the presence of 5 Management Board members as quorum. In this case, it is noted that Felix Anthony, despite being present in the meeting, was not a member of the Management Board and therefore the Meeting on 07 December 2017 did not meet the quorum required pursuant to clause 11.3 of the PDP Constitution. *

  1. Office of the President of PDP

Following the resignation of Lynda Tabuya as President, the PDP was required under clause 19.3 of the PDP Constitution to ‘temporarily fill the vacancy via a vice president voted by a majority of the Management

Board.’ We find that PDP has 4 Vice President positions as per clause 20.1 of its Constitution and any of these 4 were eligible.

  1. Vice President

It is noted that only Vijay Sigh resigned as Vice President of the Party. Therefore, the PDP should, according to its Constitution have 3 other remaining Vice Presidents.

On the basis of the above findings, the Registrar has found that the absence of various Office Holders in PDP breaches its own Constitution and has therefore required the PDP to rectify this breach. The follow-on effect will facilitate the application under section 11 of the Act to be properly made.

“The office of the Registrar has taken this step to ensure that the Party is able to remedy the breaches and also urges office holders of all parties to ensure that they properly check the requirements under the Act and the Party Constitution in the performance of their functions therein.”

The PDP has until 28 February 2018 to remedy the breach failing which de-registration procedures under the Act will activate.

*Members of the media will note that it was this meeting that authorized the former President of PDP to sign an MOU with Social Democratic Liberal Party.

-Ends-

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

Final call-out for Election Official applications

Final call-out for Election Official applications

Only 10 days remain for persons who wish to apply for positions as Election Officials in the 2018 General Election.

The last phase of recruitment began on 05 January 2018 and will end on 26 January 2018.

Fijian Elections Office [FEO] Director Corporate Services Mr Sanjeshwar Ram has confirmed additional recruitment venues are being set up in locations where the response has been low.

“Our teams will be at the FEO Divisional Offices in all four Divisions, we are also sending two teams to Kadavu and another team to Taveuni. This is to ensure that the opportunity to apply is available to as many people as possible in these final days. For the Western Division, we are particularly interested in applications from Ba, Tavua and Rakiraki.”

Recruitment at Divisional Offices will be available on the following dates:

“The FEO has made every effort to enable all eligible Fijians to apply to work in the 2018 General Election, and this is the final opportunity for persons who have not done so. Individuals must understand that there will be no further recruitments once this exercise ends on the 26th of January 2018,” said Mr Ram.

The FEO recruitment teams will be in Taveuni from 22 January to 26 January 2018, while two teams will cover Kadavu from 22 January to 25 January 2018.

Full details of the recruitment dates and venues are available on the FEO website as well as our facebook pages.

Applicants are reminded to bring along their VoterCard, current/active bank account details, copy of FNPF statement and TIN letter or joint card.

-Ends-

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

FEO Introduces Fiji’s First Voter Education Curriculum

The Fijian Elections Office [FEO] launched Fiji’s first voter education curriculum for Year 10 school students this morning.

The curriculum which is called Introduction to Elections: A Learning Module for Year 10 Social Science, consists of the following materials:

    1. Students Workbook;
    2. Teachers Manual; and
    3. Mock Election Kit

The Electoral Commission Chairperson Mr Suresh Chandra during the launch said “the curriculum handed over this morning will train 16 year olds about the Fijian Electoral Process.”

“In 2 years’ time, these 16 year olds will join the over 620,000 already registered Fijians as voters.”

The curriculum has 5 lessons and the last one is the culminating activity which is a mock simulation practical activity.

This curriculum is aimed at giving a hands on experience to students who have not yet reached the age of eighteen [18] to actually learn how to cast a vote.

Students will use the Mock Election Kit consisting of mock election materials to conduct a mock election activity in their schools. Some of the materials in the kit include ballot boxes, ballot papers, voting screens, Voter Instruction Booklets and VoterCards.

The FEO has printed 40,000 mock ballot papers for this project. In this activity, students will play and demonstrate the role of the SoE, Presiding Officer, Polling Day Workers, Observer, Media Official, Polling Agent and voters.

The mock election activity is simplified keeping in mind the ability of Year 10 students to understand and absorb the required information.

Three videos have also been developed for this purpose which will assist the teachers and students to conduct Voting, Counting and Seat Allocation.

The FEO has printed 20,000 copies of Student’s Workbook and 2,000 copies of the Teacher’s Manual which will be distributed to 16,105 students in 178 secondary schools throughout Fiji.

This website has user friendly and disability friendly features such as text-tospeech feature which can be utilized by students who are visually impaired. Students and teachers can access the website by using the web address www.votereducation.feo.org.fj.

The FEO has also conducted two [2] phases of Training of Trainers [ToT]; the first being for FEO Core Staff and the second for FEO Trained Trainers who will be sent out in the field to train 348 Social Science teachers Fiji wide.

Supervisor of Elections Mr Mohammed Saneem said “the Fijian Electoral Education Centre will conduct nationwide short trainings for social science teachers to ensure that there is consistency in the delivery of the content.”

“There is also a section for teachers on the FEO Voter education website to provide access to more materials that may refine their delivery of the materials. A voter education website has also been created for this activity.”

“The efforts of the developers of this curriculum is in line with the Electoral Commission’s theme, ‘Raising the Standards in the Delivery of Elections in Fiji’ and this is something we are very proud of,” said Mr Saneem.

“This year, we expect more than 16,100 students to go through this course in Term 1,” he added.

In addition, videos of ToT will be uploaded on the voter education website for those teachers who need to revisit certain areas of the curriculum

-ENDS-

Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

Last Callout for Election Official Applicants

With the final round of Election Officials recruitment to begin on 08 January 2018, the Fijian Elections Office is calling out to persons who have already applied but not attended the half day training to come forward.

Director Corporate Services Mr Sanjeshwar Ram says 1,539 applicants who have been selected for training have been unable to confirm a training date.

“We are moving ahead with our election preparations and can’t afford to be held back because some persons are having difficulty in making time for this half day training session.”

The next round of training begins from 22 January 2018 and all applicants who have been unavailable for training so far are encouraged to contact the Fijian Elections Office to book their date, time and venue.

“The FEO has decided that individuals who cannot make an effort to attend the half day training this time around will not be considered for Election Officials recruitment”, said Mr Ram.

The Fijian Elections Office also confirms that the same decision has been taken for 832 applicants who are unreachable via the mobile phone numbers provided during recruitment.

“These persons have not been completely ruled out as yet – they have a final chance to reach out to the FEO and make the necessary arrangements.

To date, a total of 10,281 Election Official applicants have been trained in all Divisions.

-Ends-
Please forward all media queries to the FEO Communications team at communications@feo.org.fj

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