Electoral reform group calls for delay in elections, in keeping with Constitution, to ensure election reform

Committee for Electoral Reform at a press conference

A multi-sectoral group formed to advance the cause of electoral reform in Dominica, has presented its final report.

The group, comprising leaders from the Dominica Christian Council (DCC), the Dominica Business Forum Inc. (DBF Inc.), the Water Front and Allied Workers Union (WAWU), the Dominica Bar Association (DBA), the Dominica Association of Evangelical Churches (DAEC), and the Dominica Public Service Union (DPSU), has banded together to find “ways for Dominica to achieve the necessary electoral reform before the next general election.”

The group, which first met on Wednesday 31st January 2019, recently released the report in which they reveal their findings and offer suggestions to achieve electoral reform.

The collective is concerned that if the general election is held with the public perception that its outcome did not reflect the desire of the majority of the eligible voters, it is highly possible that civil unrest and disturbances may ensue. Thus, their ultimate goal is “to attain some reasonable compromise” that will facilitate “the holding of a general election which will usher in a government in a peaceful environment,” in which citizens accept the outcome as fair, and will then direct their attention on working to build the country. To accomplish this, the group’s primary focus has been identified as sanitizing the list of eligible voters and to have each eligible voter identified with a valid ID.

Their report suggests that electoral reforms should be careful not to add increasingly detailed provisions to existing electoral law, and “while it may be necessary to fill loopholes in the electoral law, a review of the election legislation should be undertaken with the aim to clarify and simplify complex provisions as well as to remove inconsistencies and unnecessary repetitions.”

The document also stipulates that effort should be made to harmonize electoral and election-related legislation, as stability of the electoral law is crucial to credibility of the electoral process. The group recommends that a massive public education process takes place, and that the Electoral Commission engages in public dialogue on a prolonged basis in order to “put the minds of citizens at ease that that those in the apparent majority in the Electoral Commission are not deliberately delaying the process of reasonably attainable electoral reform before the next general elections.”

The group concludes that the proposed Registration of Electors (Amendment) Bill 2018 appears to make minimal contribution to the process of electoral reform and would have “profound implications for the right to vote including the risks of retaining, on the lists of registered electors, names of persons who would otherwise be determined to be ineligible to remain on those lists.” It also suggests that if this Bill is passed as proposed, The Electoral Commission would not have enough time to test the system to ensure that ID cards are used in the upcoming election.

The collective advised that all stakeholders, including political parties, and particularly, the Prime Minister, should exercise moral responsibility to ensure a smooth electoral process. In fact, the group calls for the Prime Minister to “exemplify this moral responsibility by refraining from exercising his constitutional privilege to dissolve parliament and call the next general election for at least the next six (6) months or during the period when greater effort by the Electoral Commission is realised in the necessary electoral reform, unless it becomes constitutionally due.”

The next general election is constitutionally due in 2020.

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35 Comments

  1. Casio
    August 21, 2019

    we are not going to get those reforms. Lets just call it and get on with it. They knew what they were doing. They never wanted to pass any reforms.

  2. KIP
    August 19, 2019

    Lazy politics go on the ground door to door village to village and convince the people.

  3. Kalinago Justice
    August 18, 2019

    jo jo, you and your one-man corrupt rogue regime prime mistake don’t have to listen and take heed, cause the masses will show you all how to take heed!!!

  4. Garvey
    August 18, 2019

    Every one has an opinion but my question is anyone have concerns about the corruption that is tearing the country apart.we all know that it’s there and we know of bin bobbol and the international criminal,think of Dominica and her children before party.

  5. Watch Dog
    August 18, 2019

    Moral responsibility can only be asked for if there is moral.

  6. Man bites dogs
    August 17, 2019

    Who the hell is that so-called Electoral reform group trying to tell Mr Skerrit and his government when and when not to call the election bloody hell whatever next. A bunch of arrogant so-called Workers supporters self-appointed group not recognised by anyone else seating on stage like mongoose or carnivorans calling for delay of election dam rude who send you lots Linton?

  7. For love of country
    August 17, 2019

    Uwp won Roseau North south Central the most highly populated areas .is it fair to say that it was a true vote

  8. Joseph John
    August 17, 2019

    I am amazed that a group that was “banded together” with no legal standing can tell the government what to do.
    This band or gang have submitted a report, but to whom.
    They demanded that there must first be electoral reform based on their style before election is called. Wow, they have more power than the Constitution, Acts of Parliament, the President, the Cabinet and the Prime Minister. They have more power than the government itself. Wow.
    You know what they say about people who assume power ? I wont say on this media because DNO will delete it .
    This demand is exactly like the “Skerrit must go” incitement of February 17, 2017. with a 14 day deadline.
    Is there a disguise threat ?
    Well Skerrit is still there and will be there for at least 15 more years. He never moved. Nott one inch.
    So if he calls election before their demands are met, what next? Will they declare Linton P.M. like was illegally done by the leader of the opposition in Venezuela ?

  9. Garvey
    August 17, 2019

    The group of people who are speaking out on their democratic rights have no say as far as some of you all are concern,but Anthony Astaphan,Hartley Henry and all the others who are not elected officials have their say and some of you think it’s okay. What about the country best interest.What about right and wrong?what about the allegations of misconduct? maybe some of you all are okay with the country being fleece and you don’ care about your share or your children’s future but the rest of the Dominican public cares.Mr Linton is not the problem,corruption is.and I man is not DLP,UWP,DFP I am Dominican.

  10. Kalinago Justice
    August 17, 2019

    jos-if jo-on; are you trying to discard the freedom and democracy that the people of this island have :?: Are the people of the Committee for Electoral Reform not legitimate Nationals of the island and have a right to be concerned about what is affecting the island :?: It’s seems that once people like you blindly owe your allegiance to someone, whether they’re right or wrong is of no interest to you! :?: Anyway,we the masses will move on to save the land from crooked crooks and criminals, leaving blind followers like you to perish!!!

  11. Jonathan Y St Jean
    August 17, 2019

    Skerritt has had over 9 years to implement electoral reforms in Dominica. He and his cohorts have already made up their minds that there won’t be any electoral reforms before the next election. Consider that the Chairman of the electoral reform commission failed to be present to meet with the mission on electoral reform invited to Dominica by Skerritt. This no show speaks loudly and speaks volumes. This attempt to give Skerritt face-saving room he didn’t ask for not does he need is appeasement. Dictators must not be appeased. No electoral reform, by the due date, no elections.

  12. Gary
    August 17, 2019

    This report can be described as a platform for a political agenda. This so called group or self-appointed leaders are political operatives, the report is based on their political beliefs and feelings ignoring facts and evidence. Why would this group advocate subverting The Constitution as a compromise to their perception of an impending civil unrest if elections were to be held on the constitutionally due date. As to the cleansing of the electoral list, The Electoral Commission is responsible to make sure that someone is eligible to vote, there is a procedure, but the Electoral Commission cannot take it upon themselves too unilaterally decide someone on the voting list is not eligible to vote. Why would the group want to impose their political beliefs and perceptions as to what is moral to The PM, where this group got its authority to decide and advocate morality, LOL. Why permit irresponsible so called people in authority with a political agenda to sell us a disaster.

    • RandyX
      August 18, 2019

      Why permit irresponsible so called phantasists with a political and corrupt agenda to come on her and sell us their Skerrit propaganda? Go away, it’s people like you that sell their country to the highest bidder.

      • Gary
        August 19, 2019

        Why do you write such foolishness. Why don’t you take a dictionary and look up the word propaganda, look at your past comments and see how it fit the definition of the propagandist you are., your lesson for the week. I will tell you this, I never sold my Country to anyone, I’m not in the capacity to do so. Why your silly obsession with PM Skerrit. Dominica is bigger than Skerrit, Politicians come and go. If the people of Dominica decide that he is not up to par they will remove him and if they think he is moving the country in the right direction he will be elected again it’s that simple. The comments you post are your opinions, and they are not necessarily the truth.

        • RandyX
          August 20, 2019

          Where is the missing CBI money??? You still saying if Skerrit is up to par? You PM is a thief!!!

  13. Kalinago Justice
    August 16, 2019

    :?: What’s wrong with all you one-man corrupt rogue regime prime mistake clown supporters :?: Even something as democratic as electoral reforms you all are against :?: Do you all mean to like a one-man corrupt rogue regime more than the island you supposedly love :?: If your one-man corrupt rogue regime prime mistake is so good with the governance of the island and deserve to win another elections, what’s wrong with electoral reforms :?: You all are not confident about the one-man corrupt rogue regime winning legitimately, therefore you all will support his stealing of another elections the same way he caused$1.2 billion to disappear!!! No electoral reforms, no elections!!!

  14. Lin clown
    August 16, 2019

    % % %,UWP is the most CORRUPT political party that has ever been in Dominica.That is the ONLY party to win without the majority of the electorate.UWP record 1995-34.26%.2000-43.24%.2005-43.67%.2009-34.86%.2014-42.85.So the MAJORITY of Dominicans do not like UWP.% I have put my LIFE on the line for my country.I will never let people like you,and the LYING,LAZY,UNEDUCATED UWP to destroy it.Linton asked you to multiply 3,961 by 50,000 and you came up with 1,000,000,000 just like your LINTON.% I attended the Dominica Grammar School,when GOODRICH was headmaster,then GOUGH took over.That is how I know LINTON is a waste of time like you.LABOUR CANNOT and WILL NOT lose the election.Instead of talking BS,go on the ground like me and,do some campaigning for your USELESS UWP.TRAITOR.

    • RandyX
      August 17, 2019

      You are a total waste of space, that’s all I have to say to you. Have you ever considered what might happen to you after the elections? I mean there won’t be any handouts no more, let alone free houses!

    • %
      August 17, 2019

      Clown, you are just a clown..The 3961 was for just five months clown..Now there is something called projection clown, and clown the projection was for a year clown. Clown the figure used by patriot Linton was even conservative clown, because clown, lazy Skerrit came up with a bigger amount..
      So clown the question is: “”Where is the money????
      Where is the money?
      Where is the money??

    • Kalinago Justice
      August 18, 2019

      Ah lin the clown,it seems your position will be threatened if there’s a free and fair elections, your anger on here demonstrates that! :?: It’s a good thing that we the people outnumber you and your one-man corrupt rogue regime prime mistake, you should be in fear of offended us when we take to the streets!!!

    • Joseph John
      August 19, 2019

      @ lin Clown,…..the answer is 198,050,000. The amount is overstated by 801,950,000. well Linton has his gang going into a uproar by his billion dollar lie. The biggest lie of all is that his educated members of the House, the gang of five, and his minority members of his followers are believing in his 5 th grade multiplication skills.
      They are not even noticing that he is leading them to chaotic behavior with his lying tongue.
      I will not be surprise that most his candidates will desert him at the last moment because he has nothing to offer but lies, and more lies.
      How can intelligent educated people allow Linton …………………….. to lead them astray to shame and dishonor. Have they research his tract record ? Have they his brute face.
      So uwp followers are telling me if they worked in H R they would hire someone who does not even qualify as dog catcher to be CEO in their organization. What is his qualification, skill levels, experience and competences. Oh

  15. The writing on the wall
    August 16, 2019

    PM back is leaning against the wall but unlike the good king in the bible, PM CANNOT turn to God because he knows better. So let’s take a look at the the writing we see on the wall the last two weeks:
    1. So PM chose July 29 to give his budget address and he boobooed BIGTIME!
    2. Hon Linton saw he boobooed and simply asked “Where the money gone?”
    4. Tony, Christian and Sam tried to spin things out but instead they put PM in MORE trouble
    5. So Pm decides to go on Kairi with Lin clown but papa, PM put himself in more trouble when he indirectly told us that Linton was right and if he had to answer Linton is not $1.2 billion but $2.2 he would have to account for
    6. So he told his religion Minister to organize a service for him but make sure she invites his prophets and be sure they give Linton a back seat. But it so happened that a prophet confirmed to Skerrit that he is on his way out and somehow he spotted Linton, like Samuel saw David, and anointed him as the one.
    So PM run out…

  16. As I see It
    August 16, 2019

    He said, “Listen, all you people of Judah and Jerusalem! Listen, King Jehoshaphat! This is what the LORD says: Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s 2 Chronicles 20:15
    people of Dominica, the battle is not yours!

    1. Skerrit’s intention was to call the elections sometime after the 2017 World Creole Festival. But Maria came and not even festival we could have.
    2. Since Maria in 2018, Skerrit has been thinking of calling it. But Venezuela started to fall apart and that Skerrit was afraid of. He has been conducting poll after poll but his polls telling him he in trouble.
    3. Skerrit with all his money thought of just buying the election. But he realized the foreign voters would crook him
    4. He tried everything with new candidates here and there; but that too got him scared.
    5. He thought of November this year but Linton came with the billion dollar question
    6. Now he realize he might be out b4 the elections

  17. Lin clown
    August 16, 2019

    This group is saying if UWP win without electoral reform it is ok.WHEN Labour win there will be trouble.RODNEY UWP will NEVER accept defeat with or without ELECTORAL REFORM.Your group recommendation is a waste of time.Shaka Zulu Caricom,OAS or not your party will not accept defeat.I am letting you and Rodney know Labour WILL WIN the next election and there will be NO VIOLENCE IN DOMINICA.

    • Kookooyoucou
      August 16, 2019

      @ Lin clown, I have two questions for you:
      1. So what IF PM is out of power and moves to a new address before the next election?
      2. I heard PM is now out of state. So what IF he gets to stay in the US to answer some questions on his favorite subject of CLIMATE CHANGE?

      Gason Lin be careful you and that little kid on the block and that Elizabeth don’t do like Peter and say I don’t know this fellow and the cock don’t crow three times

      • RandyX
        August 17, 2019

        This is going to happen to a lot of current labour mouthpieces when D-day comes. They live from one day to the next and don’t think a day ahead let alone a few month.

  18. Spicegirl
    August 16, 2019

    They can make a new voters list and give everyone I’d card and all you will still say labouur thief the election when we win…..

  19. What??
    August 16, 2019

    What a bunch of losers!! No matter how you spin this UWP cannot win more that 3 seats. What a waste of time. Don’t worry, we are waiting the Caricom and AOS report and recommendations. If you all don’t like it, them burn down the city again like the thugs who followed there uneducated leader.

    • August 17, 2019

      What is happening in Dominica is not a competition between leaders, Linton is there to hold the PM to his word that’s is the roll of the Opposition so it’s very serious we need to know what is going on with the monies that comes into the Island and Treasury and how it’s been used we talking about Dominica and the people don’t you want to know it’s your money, but maybe you have been getting your share so you don’t care what’s going wrong and what are we going to do to make it right so we can get the development moving, about the Hotels how many people will be filling them up, we are starting from the top instead of starting from the bottom up . I love Dominica and I want her to prosper St.Kitts shouldn’t be better off than us.that shouldn’t be.

  20. Lin clown
    August 16, 2019

    We LABOURITES are not going to accept any recommendations from this group.They are UWP political PUPPETS.We laboutites are in the majority.There will be no reform before election.

    • %
      August 16, 2019

      @clown.
      Well if clown is the spokesperson for this corrupt labour party, well is now I really believe that DLP really finish bat!!!
      Where is the money?
      Where is the money?
      Where is the money?

    • Heather Germanotta
      August 16, 2019

      Remember, when you do clownery, the clown comes back to bite !

  21. KID ON THE BLOCK
    August 16, 2019

    That group is just another ARM of the UWP headed by Rodney.
    Problem could have been solved long time if the bill had been passed. Because ALL that the group is proposing/recommending is in the bill. The KEY word.. HARMONIZE… AND THIS SHOULD BE A MUTUAL UNDERSTANDING by ALL involved.
    So One don’t see the reason to ask the PM that he should refrain from his moral responsibility from excising his constitutional privilege to dissolve parliament to meet the group demands.

    That’s all for now.

  22. Shaka zulu
    August 16, 2019

    What about the CARICOM and OAS representatives who were supposed to be here doing an assessment? What are thier findings and recommendations? Where is thier report

    • Joseph John
      August 16, 2019

      @ Shaka Zulu,…. So there is a group consisting of regional organization, the OAS and CARICOM in Dominica. They have not yet to submited a report with recommendations on Electoral Reform. But an electoral reform committee which is not recognized, does not have a mandate and has no legal authority want to make decisions for the nation on constitutional matters. They want to nullify the CARICOM/OAS mandate in advance of the submission of any reports.
      This group that was “banded together” (like a carnival band) to make recommendation for electoral reform is not even recognized as an advisory group can make recommendations to the regional groups or meet with them for inputs, that is all. There is no guaranty that their views will be considered. No one has to pay any attention to what they have to say, much less do what they want.
      They cannot impose their dictatorial will on us. They will try but we are not buying what they are selling to launch their political gang.

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