FIJI’S ELECTION OBSERVERS RETURN FROM SUCCESSFUL TRIP TO AUSTRALIA

PHOTO CAPTION: (From left to right):Michelle Wells- AEC liason officer, Mike Nelson- AEC Liaison officer (back), Asenaca Kolinivala -Acting principal Admin Officer Fiji Elections Office, ?Bronwen Shelley-director international services AEC, Cate Thompson – Assistant Director international services AEC, Simon Starr- Department of Foreign affairs Australia (back), Mohammed Saneem)

MEDIA RELEASE

The Fiji Elections Office has gained experience that will enhance its preparations for 2014’s parliamentary elections during a 5 day long mission to Canberra this past week to observe Australia’s federal election.

“There are a number of lessons that we’ll take back to Fiji with us, on such things as best practices for the setup and management of polling stations. It was also valuable to see the manner in which Australia’s Voter Education program is conducted,” said the Acting Permanent Secretary Responsible for Elections, Mohammed Saneem.

Mr. Saneem said that his team also had the opportunity to network with electoral administrators from other countries, as well as with international organisations such as Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) and International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES).

The Permanent Secretary Responsible for Elections has thanked his Australian counterparts at the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) for their invitation to participate in the “Election Visitor Program.

The program included briefings on the Australian electoral system and the structure of the AEC, as well as providing the opportunity to observe pre-polling, polling, the scrutiny of votes, counting after the close of polling and the election night virtual tally.