Leader of the United Workers Party (UWP), Lennox Linton has reiterated his party’s call for reforming the island’s electoral process stating that “we will not have another election in Dominica without Electoral Reform.”
He spoke at a national consultation on the need for Electoral Reform in Dominica held at the Goodwill Parish Hall on Tuesday.
According to him, Electoral Reform is a most critical need now in the lives of Christian people of good conscience, to secure the sustainable resilient development of Dominica for the benefit of all Dominicans.
He said that in Dominica political parties contest elections, but are not responsible for the conduct of elections.
“That responsibility has been passed in our Constitution to the independent Electoral Commission and it is the role and function of that commission to ensure that the system before elections is in place and that the election results are a true, honest reflection of the popular will, the will of the people,” he explained. “It truly and accurately tells us who the people would like to run their affairs for the next five years.”
According to Linton, the UWP has been calling for electoral reform since May 2005.
He went on to say that Dominica is heading into another election which is constitutionally due sometime in 2020 and because there is no fixed date for elections it can be called at any time and ID Cards are needed for voting.
He said that reform should take into consideration the issue of overseas voting.
“The law provides that if you have been living outside of Dominica for more than five years then your name should be struck from the register… vote where you live,” Linton said. “If you are voting in America, if you are voting in England or you are voting in Canada because that is where you have taken up residence, leave the voting in Dominica to those of us who reside here.”
Linton said the reform agenda should include prevention of bribery, access to the media and other election offenses.
“The reform agenda also includes eliminating the abuse of state money and the institutions of the state,” he remarked.