CCM VOTER EDUCATION: Electoral Reform in Dominica – What is it?

The Concerned Citizens Movement (CCM) will be conducting a Voter Education Series over the next few months. The purpose of this education drive is to provide the citizens of Dominica with basic information about elections and the electoral process. It is hoped that this exercise will help strengthen democratic values by generating more interest in voter responsibilities especially among the youth.

Dominica is a Democratic country. Therefore, electoral laws govern the process of choosing its government. Those laws were written by legal scholars who try very hard to make sure that such laws are fair and do not infringe on rights. However, over time the need may arise where it is necessary to examine them to make sure that they are being followed. In addition, there may be opportunities to add or remove some provision that would strengthen such laws and make them fairer and enhance democracy. Any such changes could be called electoral reform.

In Dominica, the electoral reform that is being sought is minimal. Most Dominicans want:

1) The provisions of Electoral Act be followed in order to provide a clean voters list.

2) Make the provision for a Voter ID card effective.

3) Add some provision to control campaign finance

4) Add a provision to provide for access to media resources for all political parties. As you can see, those reforms or adherence to the existing laws are not drastic. Because any reform to electoral laws must be done in such a way that those provisions do not infringe on the constitution or diminish rights.

 

1. Clean Voters List

It is common knowledge that the Electoral Commission is the Independent Body that is responsible for conducting elections. The Commission receives its power from the electoral Laws of Dominica. The Registration of Electors Act falls under such laws. This Act sets out specific provisions that the Electoral Commission is supposed to follow.
Such requirements would ensure that every year on September 3oth a clean or updated Voters List is published. Two of the main obligations are a) the updated voters list does not contain the names of dead people and b) the names of voters who have lived overseas for more than 5 consecutive years be taken off the list.

However, for many election cycles the Electoral commission has not followed the provisions of the Act and so most Dominicans are asking for reform in that area. In other words, the Commission must follow the provisions of the Act. This reform does not necessitate amending the Electors Act. The Commission must institute avenues necessary to verify that all voters on the Updated Voters list are entitled to be there.

 

2.Voter Identification Cards

It is unclear why Voter ID Cards have never effected by the Commission. Especially, when Section 19 of the Electors Act makes such a provision. Most Dominicans are requesting that the Electoral Commission must provide a Voters ID Card. This is a reform, because even though the Act provided the opportunity for a Voter ID Card it has
not been introduced. Hence its institution would be a change of action. In this case the Act does not need to be modified because the provision is already there. The Electoral Commission is also given the authority under the Act to include any information they think would be necessary to prevent voters from voting more than once.

 

3.Campaign Finance Regulation

Sometimes electoral reform may be the addition of a requirement. It is a fact that if one political party has an extraordinary amount of money with which to campaign then they would have an unfair advantage. Many are also of the opinion that all donations should be disclosed. This would prevent donors from having undue influence on electoral officials.

 

4.Equal Access to State Media Resources

Access to State Media resources should be available all political parties. Many Dominicans have complained at the lack of representation of differing voices on DBS the State-Owned station. Many would like to see all parties including community groups receive dedicated time so that information could be balanced. Such a provision would
entail amending present law. This would be an electoral reform.

To summarize, reform is any change from the usual way one operates. As a result, most of the electorate in Dominica are asking the Electoral Commission to follow the Electors Act and above all adhere to the Constitution to guarantee free and fair elections in Dominica.

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33 Comments

  1. Lin Clown
    March 8, 2019

    Neville andFloridian diaspora in 2014 17587 voted for the UWP.Why is it that the CCM which is a branch of the UWP cannot get 200 people at there meetings. Neville tell me what percentage is 200 of 17587 A-hole .Educate us

    • Neville
      March 11, 2019

      As stated before, you are the biggest one by quite a margin. No doubt on Wednesday you’ll be queuing up again at the red clinic for your monthly envelope. You are a very sad individual!!

  2. Joseph John
    March 8, 2019

    Those unidentified flying objects, those invisible ghost writers want me to believe all what they say without identifying themselves. No ID cards. The same I D that makes the center of their political platform. They want me to believe a political level playing field do not exist so it is impossible to have free and fair elections in accordance with our Constitution. Are they sending out those noises to foreign entities for hidden motives. all and every political advantage or disadvantage is available to all equally. Right now the Leaders of the UWP are in New York and Houston rising campaign money. Nothing is preventing them from bringing plane loads of voters to Dominic for elections. Every day opposition gang bangers are on radio, news papers, DNO and social media banging Skerrit and DLP left right and center but they want DBS radio to give them more air time. The say Skerrit have campaign funds, but they were on radio and pay pal raising money to pay legal bill and for medical aid.

    • Bee
      March 8, 2019

      and your point is????

    • Neville
      March 8, 2019

      You are insane!

    • %
      March 8, 2019

      You seem to be worse than Skerrit in terms of expressing yourself…You have said absolutely nothing here..Please let someone read over your idiocy for you, before you hit the send button.
      Skerrit Must Go
      Skerrit Must Go
      LAZY Skerrit Must Go Now

    • Ibo France
      March 8, 2019

      Your are merely advancing unadulterated absurdity. You cannot be serious as those statements are just imbecilic. Discernment is sadly lacking in this instance. I detest it when people try to defend blatant wrongdoings. It gives succor to the culprits. Anytime people try to defend the indefensible, they open up themselves to ridicule. This is more than support for a political party, this is cult-like worship.

  3. Ibo France
    March 7, 2019

    The electoral laws and regulations should be adhered to by all political parties. There should be complete re-registration of the voters to sanitize the list (removal of dead people’s names, accurately register electors where they live, etc.). Campaign finance reforms and access to DBS are urgently needed. These are easily doable. With these charges and reforms, no political party will gain an advantage as these actions create a level playing field. Why this most stubborn resistance by the ruling elites? Their resistance to implement these good governance reforms is grotesquely disgusting. Their souls have to be chronically sick and overly dark. Sensible Electoral Reforms NOW!

  4. Man bites dogs
    March 7, 2019

    Concerned Citizens movement my knob, there is no such thing as a Concerned Citizen movement in Dominica. Your real name is So-called Workers clowns 🤡 party do not come hitting us with stones and tell us is mud, we are not as stupid as you lots think we are!!!!

    • Floridian Diaspora
      March 7, 2019

      Just like there is no Dr called Roosevelt Skeritt. Both doctorates are as fake as they could get. His real name is dictator. How about that????

    • Bee
      March 7, 2019

      Instead of shooting the messenger why don’t your intelligent self give us your views on the article addressed? tell us why you think it is not necessary. tell us why you think there is nothing wrong with the electoral system as it is now? Try convincing the reader to your point of view.

    • Ibo France
      March 7, 2019

      You and your writer always concern yourselves with belittling people and engaging in silliness. Don’t you think that electoral reforms are critically important to good governance? Should the loopholes be brazenly exploited? The DLP should be leading the debate on this topic. Instead, they are fighting tooth and nail to implement fair and sensible electoral reforms. Don’t make yourselves completely irrelevant by avoiding the issue and casting aspersions on people who have no beef with you.

      • Man bites dogs
        March 8, 2019

        Sorry to disappoint you Ibo France, I am not here to educate people like you in politics. I’m only here to kick guys like you and others off your kind into line. That’s what one calls a “chief whip of the Labour Party”

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 6
      • Ibo France
        March 9, 2019

        Man bites dogs, if your mission is to persuade electors to vote for the DLP, you are doing more harm than good for your party. You are alienating many from your party with your insensitive, infantile and sometimes indecipherable tirades. You are the UWP’s best vote getter. No one wants to associate him/herself with that sort of crudity.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1
    • Joseph John
      March 7, 2019

      Well Man. Here is something to bite. Is there a coup going on in the UWP house. CCM is doing injunction and holding political campaign on a matter UWP is pursuing. Now Lennox is in north America, New York and Houston, Tx campaigning. What Happen to the ‘no election without reform message’ . Lennox has already chosen his candidates.

      • Man bites dogs
        March 8, 2019

        @ Joseph John, I have not seen or heard anything about uncle Linton yet, for that reason I will be commenting on his activities… Thanks

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 3
  5. Many are asking about the CCM’s injunction with regards to electoral reform in Dominica. The injunction was quite valid in addressing key issues in the Government’s attempt to revise the electoral laws. For one, the Government wanted to go to SELECT CITIES in the United States to register voters. However, this does not make sense for a few fundamental reasons. 1. Who decides what Cities to go to? 2. What about Dominicans in other Cities in the diaspora? Wouldn’t they be disenfranchised by this very selective process? Wouldn’t this be unfair if the process is only done in SELECT CITIES where one party or the other have already identified voters in their favor? We cannot enact laws that have the potential to be very unfair in an effort to CORRECT UNFAIRNESS! Thus the injuction was right!!!!

  6. Lin Clown
    March 7, 2019

    90% of Dominicans whether in or out of Dominica do not care about electoral reform. CCM are A-holes

    • Floridian Diaspora
      March 7, 2019

      Do you represent 90% of all Dominicans? Because you don’t care about it doesn’t mean that 90% of the population doesn’t. By your dumb mathematics it looks like you’re the A-hole

    • Neville
      March 8, 2019

      You are the biggest one for writing this and showing your true colours.

  7. Stephen Nicholas
    March 7, 2019

    It be wised to inform us on the injunctions with reference to re confirmation exercise of overseas voters, treating and bribery and national ID Card. Since the DLP teethes are making us to believe that the CCM injunctions on the above are hindering electoral reform

  8. google
    March 7, 2019

    Dear CCM,

    An injunction was placed in the courts by the CCM, can the CCM tell the general Public why this was done and how does the CCM expect reform?
    Please explain your position the PEOPLE of DOMINICA.

    • %
      March 7, 2019

      You need to remove the red wax clogging your ears and listen well to all sides,then you will learn.
      Skerrit Must Go
      Skerrit Must Go
      LAZY Skerrit Must Go Now

      • google
        March 7, 2019

        % why listen to the same repetitive BS on all talk shows there is no real value but waste of precious time

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1
  9. google
    March 7, 2019

    Dear CCM,

    I agree to clean to voters list by removing dead persons from the list. But under no terms should persons out of Dominica should be removed. The Dean of the DSC gave the most compelling reasoning which I give full support thereof. If someone went to Australia to study a BSc and then decided to pursue a Doctorate that would take min. seven years. So is the CCM saying that a DOMINICAN should not pursue their dreams?

    • Dixie Normas
      March 7, 2019

      i do agree with you on people not living in the country for 5 years be removed! we all Dominicans and it is global economic world, but it is unfortunate currently this is in the law books.

    • %
      March 7, 2019

      The law does not say if you are out of Dominiica you should be removed from the list. I have never, ever heard this being espoused by members of any of the opposition parties either, or even their supporters . However if I understand the law well, it states that you have to reregister after being abroad for five consecutive years.
      You should listen to the law,not Dean of college or loud mouth labourites, who are saying that opposition parties do not want Dominicans living abroad to vote .Unadulterated hogwash!!!! A lie from the pit of hell,that unsuspecting labourites are wantonly and maliciously propagating..
      I applaud the CCM,and I am prepared to stand for Electoral Reform… Election rigging on island must stop!!!!!
      Skerrit Must Go
      Skerrit Must Go
      LAZY Skerrit Must Go Now

    • Joseph John
      March 8, 2019

      Our students overseas will become stateless persons because they will have lost their citizenship. People who have dual citizenship will loose their citizenship. If you visit a foreign country and you are in jail for five years you loose your citizenship. If you go to the USA and you overstay for five years , and if you are in high school in a foreign country with relatives when you turn 18 you lose your identity. So the new deal is to make Dominicans stateless people.
      when you steal citizens rights you expect them to sit on their hands and do nothing. Well there is class action, there is injunction and other legal avenues.
      This thiefing would be UNCONSTITUTIONAL.My question is this …Does not legal practice set presidents any more? are presedents no more involve in legal procedure? So what has been the practice for the last 40 to 50 years. what has been the presidents, the procedures changes for the last 10 elections. What is the hard evidence claiming bad elections .

    • Joseph John
      March 8, 2019

      So we have dead people voting in Dominica. Is that a Sour Sour funny Calypso. So when a dead person comes to vote does the officials and agents of political parties recognize him/her/it. So if a dead person comes to vote, do you say go away you are dead. Well CCM all you have to do is to bring death certificates to the electoral office and remove the name of those ghosts. You had a demonstration to invade the electoral office . Without the police intervention you would have mashup the place and loot and destroy all the records. Is that how you hope to delete the names of dead people. You know what happen to people who interfare with the dead. Well they end up like Jombee Money with no eyes to close.

  10. RandyX
    March 7, 2019

    It look like most politicians and clear thinking citizens know what is needed to make elections in Dominica fairer. Unfortunately the ones not clear about it is Skerrit, his ministers and little Tony. Or perhaps are they just playing fool to catch wise?

  11. %
    March 7, 2019

    Brilliant move!! ..And I believe that part of the education should be to inform eligible voters that our next election should not allowed to be stolen .. Remember the Commonwealth Observation Team told us election be 2014 was unfair…
    Skerrit Must Go
    Skerrit Must Go
    LAZY Skerrit Must Go Now

  12. In de junction
    March 7, 2019

    Educate us on the injunction

    • Dixie Normas
      March 7, 2019

      if you were not in you political bubble you will have no need to ask!

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