PM to make recommendations on electoral reform

The matter of the National ID Card will be addressed by the PM
The matter of the National ID Card will be addressed by the PM

Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, says he intends to make “pertinent recommendations” to the Electoral Commission on electoral reform.

He said a number of issues on that matter, including the issuing of Multi Purpose National ID Cards, the voter’s list, overseas Dominicans coming to vote, among others, will be addressed.

“I intend to issue a statement and also to write to the Electoral Commission, through his Excellency the President, articulating Government’s position with respect to electoral reform and we will be making a number of very pertinent recommendations to the Electoral Commission on a way forward to electoral reform,” Skerrit told State-owned DBS Radio.

The National ID cards will be addressed, he noted, since the Electoral Commission already has the system and resources for issuing them.

“As you know we have purchased the system, the Electoral Commission has the system, it has all the resources that it requires to issue those cards,” he said. “What we have to address is the issue of legislation. So I intend to give a very specific statement to the public on this where the government stand and indeed where the Labour Party stands in respect to electoral reform, the voters’ list, the National Id Cards, addressing the issues of persons living overseas coming in to vote, and there are a number of critical issues which we will be addressing.”

The matter of electoral reform was among the strong calls made by the opposition United Workers Party (UWP) in the run up to the 2014 General Election.

The ruling Dominica Labour Party (DLP) has been accused of putting stumbling blocks to the process.

But the Prime Minister said the Government has “always been supportive of reviewing our system.”

“Obviously legislation systems must be reviewed after a period of time, it must be progressive reviews of those systems,” he argued. “So we will be articulating that to the public and of course writing to the Electoral Commission through the His Excellency the President and our view is to ask the Electoral Commission to put in place a time table towards achieving this very critical milestones with respect to the election process and electoral reform.”

The matter of the Multi Purpose National ID Cards has been a long running issue in Dominica, which has been drawn along political lines.

The UWP has been adamant that Voter ID Cards, as opposed to National ID Cards, are necessary since it was recommended both by the Chief Elections Officer in a report in 2009 and an OAS observer mission to Dominica.

Furthermore, according to the the UWP, voter ID cards will help “clean up the voters’ list” and make “voters of this country independent.”

On the other hand, the government has made it clear that a National ID Card is the way to go, arguing that Voter ID cards will be too expensive for the country.

In 2011 Skerrit said the government aims to have the National ID Cards ready for the next general election, which was constitutionally due by 2015.

In 2013, then Health Minister, Julius Timothy said 100,000 of the National ID Cards would be made available to the public by the end of that year.

But by June 2014, the Electoral Commission said it will take approximately two years for the cards to be implemented and it would not be used for the consistutionally due general election.

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45 Comments

  1. It is what it is
    May 27, 2015

    Ok. So here you have it! The Honorable is about to pass the baton to the next leader. Hon. Roosevelt Skerrit will not be contesting the next general election as the leader of the Dominica Labor Party. The next leader will have to fend for himself to get the votes needed to win. My pocket full!

  2. May 27, 2015

    He said ,”He will be articulating it to the Public ” :lol: :lol: :lol:

  3. Francisco Telemaque
    May 26, 2015

    Skerrit always comes up with some blowing fart, in the wind idea. Reform is an emergency, at this point; and I believe the commission should know the rules relating to reform. If they were an independent body, not functioning under the influence of the dictator Skerrit, he would not have any need to tell the commission what to do to rig the reform so that he will continue to win!

    Now, I could understand if he said he will invite the opposition to present their version of recommendations, and they would compare Skerrit’s, ideas, to that of the opposition, and allow the best ideas to prevail. As stated right now Skerrit is leaving the public, and the opposition out.

    That is wrong, and to my mind illegal! Both sides of the equation should be involved in the way of moving forward!

    • Kid On The Block
      May 27, 2015

      Shut up. You make no sense! Ediot.

  4. Tampa
    May 26, 2015

    Political maturity would suggest that the electoral reform process be an all inclusive matter. But it seems that we are not at that stage in our development. What a pity.

  5. too late
    May 26, 2015

    comrade

    This is madness! Who advice you to do that. We wouldn’t be able to sell passport again, fire bomb, use our bit coin , import voters ,run the Haitian visa racket , fool poor people with hand out and lies and this will affect your election legacy.

  6. kalinago
    May 26, 2015

    Labor for love are you for real, does these kind of people still exists in 2015. Just asking a question.

  7. Liberty
    May 26, 2015

    The PM seems to have this the wrong way round?The commission should be making the recommend to the Goverment for discussion .This should then be brought to Parliament for further scrutiny before making any further decision.
    Of course this is Dominica so we should not expect due process to be followed

  8. May 26, 2015

    we should wait and see with our eyes & ears open & hope that Mr. Skerrit is no giving us a Diable en sac.

  9. Herbert Sabaroche
    May 26, 2015

    DNO,
    The statements which follows represent the recommendations of the OAS Mission published in the Caribbean News May 22, 2015, The OAS Team served as observers at the last elections in Dominica.
    Among the recommendations to the government of Dominica, “most of which were already made by the 2009 EOM,” the report includes: “carrying out a comprehensive update of the list of voters; implementing a voter identification system; enacting campaign finance regulations; reviewing electoral boundaries; reviewing legislation governing the validity of votes; and promoting the political participation of women”.
    Let us hope that there will be limited deviation from these repetitive recommendations.

  10. Doc. Love
    May 26, 2015

    If Angelo , had not broken the news about a company called My Dominica Trade House, Dominicans would not have seen approximately six hundred pictures where Skeritt, Ministers of Government and some friends were wining and dining in Malaysia . When I saw the lavish entertainment, the signing of documents, project proposals, files on free clinics and hospital, I asked my grand Ma, how is Skeritt doing to explain to Dominicans what really went on in Malaysia. She said to me, Son, he is going to come down with a major distraction. At first, she didn’t make sense, but when he made the statement as regards multi purpose voter I.D. cards, I realized , the old lady knew Skeritt better then I do. How can voter I.D. cards be expensive, when he has an over loaded cabinet, the man has more advisors then Obama. After the elections, five DLP bigwigs were added to the Government’s payroll. Like my granny said, the electoral reform talk is only a distraction.

  11. Kid On The Block
    May 26, 2015

    All I want the PM to do now is set up all Laborites so by the time UWP get in power(God in heaven knows when) they alone will fell the pain of the change they are longing for. I just hope by then they won’t be crying and saying give them(UWP) a chance they just come. From ever things have never ever been good or done properly according to them. All I know the day UWP(under Lennox) become the Government, Dominica finish. Not even visas people will be getting to leave the country anymore. These people are a set. A minority set of people that blows both hot and cold at the same time. Imagine the Salisbury situation when when the Pal rep said ALL THEY ASKING is for the Government to fix their road; When work began on the roads they turned to something else. They said the Bishop was moo moo, when the Bishop came out and talk they began accusing him; Same thing happened to a judge not too long .

  12. Sue
    May 26, 2015

    . I am sorry folks but the terrible headache called Roosevelt Skerrit will be with us for a while longer. But hold on because some way, some day some way he will have to go So please hold on.

  13. mandate 2 mismanage
    May 26, 2015

    December, 2012 at a holiday celebration in New Jersey, the prime minister stated vociferously that he would ensure that when national ID cards are being issued, registration will be held in the NYC metro area!

    For those of you who fail or refuse to understand…this means that they would have ZERO effect in cleaning the voter’s list, as folks who reside out of state and do not meet the criteria for voting would be eligible for a card!

    This whole country is a joke. Until someone grabs the country from out under us and turn it into something productive, we will continue to twist and turn and remain stagnant as the world progresses. Dominica will remain a backwater playground for those who are on to bigger and better will return to wash their foot!

  14. alas
    May 26, 2015

    @real possie: some people think just because i never go big university i dotish?
    De passport is a CARICOM passport.
    skerrit mentioned why he de PM wants a National ID Card.
    Giving de impression like its a social security/ tax/health card etc. All in one..haha!
    Is there a move to make dem obsolete.
    Whether national or voters ID card……de Electoral commission should call de shots!!!!
    Skerrit should NOT INFLUENCE DE COMMISSION…..THEY HAVE A CONSTITUTIONAL OBLIGATION TO BE INDEPENDENT!
    OUR PRESIDENT AND BISHOP SHOULD CAUTION SKERRIT!
    STOP INTERFERING AND INTIMIDATING INDEPENDENT GOVERNMENT ORGANIZATIONS!!!
    i am no fool…..i don’t have lambskin nor pigskin on my wall.
    De PM Malaysian business partners…most never been to our beautiful Waitikubuli
    No particular interest…de convenience of de passport worth millions to dem
    De national id is an all in one Dominica Id
    Social security etc.
    Our latest overseas citi/voters want to vote legally i guess.

  15. usual spew
    May 26, 2015

    Whose fools are Dominicans, really?

    The Electoral Commission, a supposedly, “independent body”, as per our Constitution, has already been influenced by Skerritt’s DLP Gov’t. Remember the famous E-mail? The PM’s winning legacy will be jeoperdised

    The Commission recommended some years ago, before 2015 elections, electoral reforms, specifically, VOTER ID CARDS, to clean up the bloated Voters’ List. Say I lie. Dominicans pleaded for Years. Nothing. Nada. No reform.

    The “Independent” Commission was forced to forget its own initial plan requests/assistance funds, to provide VOTER ID CARDS, to clean the List. Instead the Commission went along with Gov’t recommendations and began with that MPIC. Indepndent what?

    OAS, CARICOM since 2005 elections their report, recommended to implement Voter ID Cards and clean the list. Issues of campaign financing, bribery against the electoral laws,, equal access to State-owned media etc., were concerns. Nothing happened…

  16. The Truth
    May 26, 2015

    DNO I am not a reporter and so I sincerely ask-is ok to express an opinion based on facts. I notice that your editors have taken a bit of a toddler step in trying to expose the chronic inconsistencies coming from Roosevelt Skerrit however DNO seem much more comfortable allowing g the readers to draw conclusions. Essentially the editors offer no opinion or to even comment on the inconsistencies much less to suggest that there is a pattern of lies and deception. In my opinion reporterse must be fearless at all times particularly when reporters have the supportingredients facts.
    As it stands there are those who interpreted data through a frosted glass and those who just call the data as it is presented. If I was a reporter I would prefer eliminate the frosted glass interpretation
    and force readers to deal with facts as oppose to inuendos,twist,spins and mirage imaging. If a man lies repeatedly ca him a liar and let the readers know that your opinion is factual

    E

    • May 26, 2015

      All this to say what? You sound just like what you creticise DNO about. Very empty comment.

    • Gary
      May 26, 2015

      Wow, here is something you should ponder about before making such comment, quote “It is not to be forgotten that what we call rational grounds for our beliefs are often extremely irrational attempts to justify our instincts”. It is so laughable when you suggested that if you were a reporter you would eliminate the frosted glass interpretation and force readers to deal with facts as oppose to innuendos,twist,spins and mirage imaging. You have just displayed what Politics can to the mind.

  17. Domfool
    May 26, 2015

    Labor of love you are a fool

  18. Laura
    May 26, 2015

    The demographics on the card are not sufficient data. There should be information on the card holder’s color of eyes, hair, height etc. Also, it should have his/her fingerprint scanned on it.

    • Zig Zog Zabat
      May 26, 2015

      @ Laura, next you will be asking for the card holder’s DNA sequence.

    • Ti Shikah
      May 26, 2015

      These are very valid observations. Thank you Laura. Sadly these people may not see your observations for what they are.

    • Exit Strategy
      May 27, 2015

      I agree with you Laura. If we are moving forward lets try at lease to get it right the first time. The proposed National ID Card has limited information which I believe isn’t sufficient moving forward in this rapidly advancing world. Furthermore, an ID Card should have specific information about the holder, not just photo and date of birth. It should include other things like what Laura mentioned (eye colour, height, etc) as this are fundamental in the identification of a person. This ID Card should have nothing to do with party politics, rather it should be based on advancing our National Security.

  19. alas
    May 26, 2015

    I don’t want national id card.
    De constitution as it stands allows for VOTER ID CARD!
    you want to change constitution to issue National id card?
    If you really cared you could have boldly make de change with your 18-3 majority in parliament.
    What about earlier promises?
    Can you explain yourself?
    What is wrong?
    Why aren’t de Electoral commission heads making de statement?
    Are you in control of the electoral commission?
    Can de commission speak for itself?
    Since you speaking first does this mean that de commission MUST follow your lead….or else?
    Unfortunately you know we de voters don’t trust you!
    LET DE ELECTORAL COMMISSION DO ITS BUSINESS
    STOP INFLUENCING INDEPENDENT ORGANIZATIONS
    YOU SHOW YOURSELF AS BEING WEAK
    YOU DON’T TRUST DE ELECTORAL COMMISSION TO DO IT’S WORK
    YOU WORKING AGAINST OUR DEMOCRACY

    i get de impression that you acting like a scared dog backed up in corner! !!
    BITE ME!

    • real possie
      May 26, 2015

      @ Alas, here’s one who just go with what they were told, do you even understand why your party wanted a voters card instead of a National ID card? they only wanted that because they know at the time the list was not going to be cleaned and if you had a voters card then that would help clean it, but now everything is going to be cleaned and other laws will be put in place there’s no need to worry about voters card. A national card is better it can be used everyday and not once every five years.

      • May 27, 2015

        You all like to follow and sugarcoat what is happening in the out side world well they don’t have National Cards they have Voters ID Cards, and I do believe it’s time to put that issue to bed don’t allow any one to dictate any other but what our Constitution call for as is.

    • May 26, 2015

      Alas, you seem to be very well misinformed. The electoral commission is a body that operates under the Law, it dosen’t make the laws or the regulations by which it operates, that function is a function of Government. Therefore like it or not it is the government that will decide the type of id that will be required for voting not the Electoral Commission. It is baffling that the PM should be addressing Commission on this matter when it is his government that is responsible for implementing the necessary reforms through legislation.

  20. Peter Potter
    May 26, 2015

    Talk…
    Dominica thrives on it!

  21. real possie
    May 26, 2015

    Am happy to see this, lets put this to rest for once and for all. When it’s all said and done no more will people rile up their supporters to make lame excuses in the public. The results will still be the same. One thing that needs to change is all news outlets has to put the writers names behind the stories they write, the web should be #1 because of the age we live in.

  22. Domfool
    May 26, 2015

    Mr. Prime Minister, don’t give yourself any headache. Sit back and watch history unfold. Do not worry about the Commonwealth of Dominica and the hardship the island is going through, instead you should be speaking to your Lawyer 24 7. I mean 24 hours around the clock 7 days a week, because justice will prevail.

  23. Not a herd follower
    May 26, 2015

    Another smokescreen by Skerrit. He has been PM for more than 11 years. And what has he done by way of electoral reform? Nothing! The multi-purpose card is a regional project with World Bank funding. Skerrit’s position on electoral reform is well-known. The status quo will remain because it benefits him and his party and their cronies.

  24. Domfool
    May 26, 2015

    Why now Mr.PM? You see where you will not be in power for to long eh, so you are trying to distract the people of Dominica. Before you start working on Electorial Reform which you should have done years ago, we want to answer Questions about your trip to the beauty country of Malaysia.Do you know about my Dominica trade house.com? Answer! Do you know mdthmedical.com. Answer! How about the millions you are taking from the state deliberately by going on trips with you and your CRONIES. Answer! How Long! Not Long. You are history. Do not bother to discuss the issues on Electorial Reform the Honorable Lennox Linton will do so. Full Stop.

    • May 27, 2015

      I agree with you it’s a move to take the minds of Dominicans of what happened in MALAYSIA, people you cannot sleep on this one it’s very damaging for the Island, those at home may not understand but listen to the reports it’s out here on the World wide web DOMINICA is look down on and the question is and I quot what is going on back there, some of the non Dominicans I come in contact with tell’s we about it, when things goes out on the web everyone reads it it’s not only Dominicans reading it .
      I just hope we will survive and soon the people will speak out as to how they are feeling. about what is happening to our beautiful Island.

  25. coyote
    May 26, 2015

    Nuff talk we want to see action.

  26. May 26, 2015

    ID cards or no ID cards, it does not matter, Labour still remains the vast majority in Dominica and will NEVER vote for the Uneducated Wicked People. So…what is the fuss all about? Electoral reform in Dominica does not mean that there will be a change in election results. Labour will never lose an election in Dominica as long as our great and humble Supreme Leader lives. His Holiness, the most esteemed, ordained, blessed and highly revered, Dr. Roosevelt Skerrit will ALWAYS be Prime Minister of Dominica…point blank!

  27. grell
    May 26, 2015

    Skerrit your recommendations will be to keep it the same,you will continue to but tickets for the welfare receipents overseas that wait every five years to travel and vote,and you will also recommend the treasury to give you money to buy the poor people votes,but god is in control Skerrit noting in life last forever,your day will come.

  28. CC
    May 26, 2015

    Its interesting that the PM wants to make recommendations on electoral reform now that the election is over. Why didnt he want to make recommendations before the election took place?

    • well , well
      May 26, 2015

      He is trying to kill the Malaysia issue that’s what he is trying

      • alas
        May 26, 2015

        Creating inroads for his Malaysian business partners.
        Since most don’t know our island.
        Not really interested in visiting.
        The convenience of a second passport is worth millions to them…..trust me.

  29. mydominicatradehouse.com
    May 26, 2015

    so skerrit after all the damage you are doing you still want to break the law with overseas voters

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