Electoral Commissioner

Blogger’s lawyer told to file motion

This notice of motion will be to ask the court to set aside the restraining orders that were taken out against Namorong by the Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato.

Commissioner Gamato on July 12th obtained restraining orders from the Waigani National Court, to stop Namarong, his servants and agents from further publishing defamatory remarks on Facebook and Twitter, against him.

The specific remarks were not stated in the notice of motion moved last week, but his lawyer told Loop PNG after court that the remarks associated Commissioner Gamato to a fruit.

​Counting of boxes allowed despite video evidence

Gamato in a media conference yesterday afternoon in Port Moresby said only one of the six ballot boxes, which have allegations of foul play raised, will be put aside during the election counting.  

“According to observations by the State Legal Team for Jiwaka, for the first six disputed ballot boxes, there is some form of evidence in the form of amateur video footage for only one ballot box, which is for Kendu 1 polling place.

“The boxes from these polling venues of Bolba 1, Bolba 2, Tolu 1, Tolu 2, and Kendu 2 will be counted

VIDEO: "Only one box will be set aside"

In a media conference this afternoon he announced that only one of the ballot boxes will be put aside, that box is from Kendu 1.

This comes after a state legal team for Jiwaka observed that video evidence only showed vote rigging for Kendu 1 and not the other five disputed ballot boxes.

 

Meredith Kuusa with more 

Gamato: Writs, tally sheets will be made available

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato said this when granting a request made by the Chief Justice Sir Salamo Injia during the two-day judges’ workshop on election petition.

Sir Salamo made a request to Commissioner Gamato to provide those documents to the Court registry from all the electorates for their records in preparation for the upcoming election petitions.

“We will make it available this election,” Gamato told the judges.

The request was made after lawyers gave a perspective of election petitions during the workshop.

Gamato welcomes US envoy’s comments

He said this following a TV interview in which the Ambassador commended the Electoral Commission.

Ebert-Grey said there was less violence, there was good logistical planning, and she noted the initiation of separate lines for women and persons living with disability.

She also urged the Government to urgently work on improving the electoral roll – a year around process - and said the United States has had similar problems.

Gamato said that a review of the roll will be done immediately after the elections.

Gamato refutes bias claims

The comments were made by incumbent Member for Sinesine-Yongomugl, Kerenga Kua, following the declaration of PNC candidates, Jame Marape (Tari-Pori), and Justin Tkatchenko (Moresby South) recently.

Gamato said the statement made by Kua in one of the dailies was incorrect and wanted to rectify any misconceptions.

“In some of my earlier press statement, I said if electorates that have completed their polling, they can allow for two to three days for preparations and go straight into counting.

Electoral officers urged to work diligently

Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato reminded electoral officers about the crucial role they play.

However, Gamato thanked all the PNG Electoral Commission staff stationed at the counting venues for their hard work and dedication.

“There will be petitions and disruptions by candidates and scrutineers but the election managers must handle these actions with the legal officers provided to them to keep the election process moving.

“I’ve issued this instruction to all election managers and assistant election managers,” Gamato said.

VIDEO: Use of ID cards to vote is Illegal

This comes after claims that students at the Pacific Adventist University were allowed to use their student ID's, even though their names were not on the electoral roll for that particular area.

 

Meredith Kuusa reports 

NCD Candidates still adamant on usage of CCTV

This afternoon they opted to purchase the CCTV for counting in NCD after Electoral Commissioner Patilias Gamato told them that the use of CCTV was not budgeted for, when responding to their petition.

He also told them that by law, scrutineers were allowed to scrutinize polling and counting.

Counting for H’lands Provinces nearing

Following the extraction of teams into remote Marawaka on Saturday preparations for counting are underway after polling in parts of Goroka.

Electoral Commissioner, Patilias Gamato says some people have asked to extend polling however they cannot as he is satisfied polling has taken place.

In Southern Highlands, poling began on Saturday.

Some areas reported shortage of ballot papers and they include Kagua Rural (Part B), Ialib Urban (Part B) and Mendi Urban (Part B).