This week, the office released the ARV. Each Constituency and each Polling District throughout the entire country has its own mini ARV. The full list – i.e. that with all Constituencies and all Polling Divisions has been made available to each political party, and a copy is available at our offices for anyone and everyone to scrutinise. Full copies of the ARV have also been sent, via the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to all of our embassies. We are hopeful that it will also be posted on the government website.
We appeal to the general public not to deface these lists. We thank those establishments that have allowed the use of their shops and hall doors for displaying this information. We are working assiduously, but cannot avoid the use of utility poles as posting stations, although this exposes the lists to the weathering.
We wish to remind persons whose names appear incorrectly to make a claim for correction, and to back this claim with evidence. Be reminded that a claim does not result in disenfranchisement but rather, the claimant will remain registered until placed where they ought rightly to be. If you allow an objection to be brought, then you run the risk of de-registration. This is one of those areas that need attention: should an objection result in de-registration or in re-positioning? This may require a parliamentary decision. Meanwhile, the Commission has already determined that where a claim and an objection is made, then the claim must be given precedence over the objection.
Two other lists were released this week Tuesday, the list of persons who applied for registration in the month of January (the monthly list) and the list of those whose December registration has been confirmed (the revised monthly list). Therefore, to fully understand the registry of persons who are now actual voters, you must study the ARV and the revised monthly list, RML. Note that it takes 2 calendar months for an applicant to be fully registered to vote. In electoral jargon, we refer to this as being “activated” on the register. Only activated persons can vote when called upon to do so.
In all of this, we wish the public to recognise the critical role it plays, along with the electoral officials in ensuring that there is one man, one vote, in the right place so that we can have fairness to all.