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April 07, 2014
Fiji TV: NGO voter education must be sanctioned by Electoral Commission
The Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has clarified that Government is not stopping civil society from helping with civic voter education.
He says in a recent meeting with NGO’s late last week, section 115 of the Electoral Decree was clearly explained.
Although the section restricts donor funded civil society groups from any electoral related activities, Sayed-Khaiyum says as long as they seek the approval of the Electoral Commission, they can still help.
“Because under the constitution the Electoral Commission is responsible for voter education but I”m sure the Electoral Commission wont mind partnering with NGO’s because a lot of them do get a lot of funding,” he said.
However the Attorney General adds NGO’s cannot be given a free reign on voter education.
“But heaven forbid, if you let them loose and they have a particular agenda they can actually go out in the rural areas and tell people the wrong thing,” said Sayed-Khaiyum.
“So this is why the education must be sanctioned by the Electoral Commission,” he says.