Sinn Féin - On Your Side

Sinn Féin to meet Electoral Office

3 March, 2004

Sinn Féin Assembly Member Bairbre de Brún will tomorrow lead a party delegation to meet with the Chief Electoral Officer Denis Stanley in Belfast. The meeting, which is being held at Sinn Féin's request is to discuss the serious shortcomings which currently exist in the Electoral Register which his office has compiled.

Ms de Brún said:

"It is estimated that around 211,000 people in the six counties are currently disenfranchised. In the three months from the Assembly election last November a further 28,000 people were removed from the register. This sort of annual shredding will continue to take place unless action is taken.

"It is not a sustainable situation for around one fifth of the total electorate to be missing from the register. We will be presenting to Mr Stanley a number of proposals which we feel his office could adopt to try and help restore public confidence in the electoral system.

"This meeting is part of a series of meetings which we will be having on this issue with the two governments, the Electoral Commission as well as international groups and the voluntary and community sector.

"It is our firm view that the legislation which has given rise to this gerrymander needs to be reviewed and amended as quick as possible. In the meantime those removed from the register need to try and reassert their right to vote through the existing mechanism of rolling registration." ENDS

Editors Note; The meeting will take place tomorrow morning (4th March) at 10.30am in the Electoral Office opposite St. Anne's Cathedral.

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