13 Aug 2016

Auckland Future blames council staff

12:16 pm on 13 August 2016

Two Auckland Future candidates are vying for the same seat, and while the group blames a form mix-up, Election Services says the paper was clearly labelled.

Auckland Councillor Denise Krum at a Council meeting about the Unitary Plan. 10 August 2016.

Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

Viliami Tiseli, from the National Party-aligned Auckland Future group, has been mistakenly nominated against the group's sitting councillor, Denise Krum, in the single-seat Maungakiekie-Tamaki Ward.

Mr Tiseli was meant instead to have been nominated for the second-tier local board.

Auckland Future's co-ordinator Sue Wood said the group had not authorised him to stand as a ward candidate, and that the signed authorisations lay with Election Services.

"This is an issue of staff competence, the person nominating is responsible for the forms they sign, they rely on the competence of the Manukau Service Centre staff, they cannot be disenfranchised.

"Viliami will not be standing as an Auckland Future candidate in the Maungakiekie-Tamaki Ward. He was given the wrong forms to fill in by Manukau Service Centre staff, this is an issue of staff competence."

The service centre is run by Auckland Council, and distributes the forms provided by Election Services.

Electoral officer Dale Ofsoske said Election Services were still looking into the matter and getting legal advice.

However he said in his experience once a nomination was lodged it was lodged and that nomination could not be withdrawn unless the person died or became incapacitated.

He said the forms had the name of the ward they were to stand for written on them four times and had to be signed by the candidate.

Another candidate which Auckland Future had announced, So'oalo Mua, did not appear among those nominated for the Manukau Ward, but it was not clear last night why.

Ms Wood said that was an error.

"So'oalo will be contesting the Manukau ward for Auckland Future. His name was left off the candidate list."