Opposition Leader, Lennox Linton has sought to clear the air and to further explain statements he made in relation to electoral reform and what he believes is preventing the process.
Attorney General, Levi Peter who was a guest on a recent Q-95 Hot Seat programme, said the leader of the opposition had stated that he was satisfied that the Bills to amend the House of Assembly Elections Act put forward by the government would achieve the objectives of the introduction of Identification Cards for the purpose of voting, and a clean register.
Peter produced an audio recording of Linton in which he [Linton] can be heard saying, “The news now is that the government will no longer pursue the amendments to the House of Assembly Elections Act that involved tampering with the provisions for criminalizing bribery and treating in elections. So they’ve taken out those amendments but they coming back with some other things which, as far as I’m concerned, are good and will work for the benefit of upgrading the legislation to the new environment [in which] we’ll be voting with ID cards.”
“They did do that,” Linton confirmed in reference to the government’s withdrawal of the amendment which he claims was seeking to legitimize bribery and treating. He was speaking during a recent interview on Q95FM.
“I also said, he continued, “that they made some other changes which seem to be okay…but…I went on to express my reservation and indeed my party’s objection, to the amendments to the Registration of Elector’s Act that are seeking to facilitate the [Electoral] Commission to confirm people on the register at select registration offices overseas.”
Linton added, “We believe that all confirmations or re-registration should be done in Dominica where we vote for the government and that is what the attorney general and others have singled out as the final sticking point which is why they claim they cannot proceed with the amendments.”
The Opposition Leader maintains that the “independent” Electoral Commission has sufficient authority under the existing law, without the proposed amendments, to proceed with the elements of reform that have been widely agreed to, across Dominica and on which there is broad consensus.