By Fiji Times – 9 September 2014
YESTERDAY, the Fijian Elections Office officially printed the 700,000th ballot paper – the final paper for Fiji’s big day – the September 17 national election.
The papers have been bound into 14,000 books and have been transported in a total of 467 boxes, the Supervisor of Elections, Mohammed Saneem, confirmed yesterday morning at a press conference at Star Printery in Suva.
“The Fijian Elections Office wishes to advise that as of now, we have finished the printing and compilation of the ballot papers. The last batch was just dispatched to a secure facility,” Mr Saneem said.
“We have printed 700,000 ballot papers and they are bound into 14,000 books and we have transported them across in 467 boxes. We used a total of 8770kg of paper for printing the ballot papers.”
Although the FEO was unable to release the total amount of money paid to Star Printery for the printing of the ballot papers, Mr Saneem said a figure would be made available shortly after the election.
He also said that in terms of pre-polling, the turn-out over the past week was very encouraging and looked to gain traction.
“Today (yesterday), we have had slight problems with the tide again and rough seas in the Eastern Division.
“However, we have communicated the message across to the affected areas and we will continue polling as usual and so far, we have had good turn-outs averaging some 75 plus per cent.
“And as we go through this week, we anticipate the same trend to continue and get stronger and as a build up to 17th of September, experience from pre-polling, what we continue to emphasise is for voters to check where they are to vote.”
Mr Saneem reminded voters that if there was any confusion about their voting venues, to send a text message with their voter ID card number to the number 545 in order to find out.
When asked about the date the FEO would begin the official dispatch of ballot papers for election day, he said work would begin this week.
“These ballot papers will now be packed into the ballot boxes and polling equipment that is going to be sent out for 17th of September for polling.
“We’re going to first start packing and once the ballot papers have been packed, we will then schedule a route for transport – we’re doing that this week.”