14 Nov 2005

Municipal election shambles in Fiji's capital, Suva

7:29 am on 14 November 2005

Municipal elections in the Fiji capital Suva were marred by inefficiencies and irregularities which saw thousands miss out on their right to vote.

Many voters who had registered were turned away because their names were missing from the final rolls while others could not be identified because their names were incorrectly spelt.

Questions have ben asked over whether there was any deliberate effort to remove names from the roll.

The elections were also marred by very low voter turnout ranging from just about 15 to 20% in the four wards.

The ruling SDL party won the Suva elections with 12 seats while the National Federation Party secured 5 seats and Labour 3.

Delayed elections in one ward of Lautoka saw Labour winning all four seats there, giving it control of the western city by 12 seats to the SDL's 4.