USE of mobile phones inside polling stations on election day next will not be permitted.
Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Mose Saitala revealed this, Monday.
He said it’s important for all eligible voters to know that cell phones will not be permitted in polling station.
“Votes must remain secret therefore it is important that voters leave their mobile phones outside before entering the polling station,” Saitala said.
He further added that the public, especially voters with mobile phones, must respect other voters and not take pictures of other people in or outside the polling station.
“Only accredited media personnel are allowed to take pictures inside a polling station in a specified time-duration authorised by the Presiding Officers,” he explained.
Saitala said he has already instructed the Returning Officers and Presiding Officers to give orders and direction to all voters entering a polling station, to leave their mobile phones outside.
“And not to take them inside the polling station when they enter to obtain and cast their ballot paper
“Failure to comply with the direction of an election official is an offence under Section 117 of the Electoral Act.
“Maximum penalty for this offence is $20,000 or 2 years imprisonment or both,” he told the media yesterday.
Saitala urges voters, candidates and agents to comply with electoral laws to ensure the democratic process of election is executed in a free and peaceful environment.
By ANDREW FANASIA