Responds to Toribiong as campaign manager of SP
By: L.N. Reklai
(Koror, Palau) “Respectfully, Palau Election Commission disagrees with your interpretation of 23 PNC Section 1401,” stated Vice Chairman Elliot Udui of the Palau Election Commission, in response to Senator Joel Toribiong’s demand to remove names from Voters Registry that registered to vote outside of Palau.
Election Commission agrees that a person qualified to votes shall register “in the administrative district in which he/she resides” but states that this language refers to voter’s residence “for the purpose of registration, not the place the person literally must stand where registering.”
Using as an example, PEC states that a voter who has residency in Ngarchelong may register to vote in Ngarchelong in a location provided by the government such location in Koror.
Furthermore, PEC claims that “every Palauan citizen who completed voter’s registration paperwork outside of the Republic of Palau has properly claimed to have residency within the Republic…absent evidence to the contrary, the PEC must accept those claims of residency as true and protect the Palauan fundamental right to vote.”
Senator Toribiong in his letter of August 25th and September 2nd , demanded that Palau Election Commission remove names of those who registered to vote outside of Palau, as they do not meet requirements of the law.
Toribiong believes that PEC is not adopting the right interpretation of 23 PNC Section 1401 (a), which states the law requires every person qualified to vote, to register to vote “in the administrative district in which he resides”.
“Our election laws describe the word “district” as geographical sections of Palau where voting takes place. I urge you to adopt this position,” stated Toribiong.
The letter sent by PEC Vice Chairman Udui was addressed to Senator Joel Toribiong, Campaign Manager, Committee to Elect Sandra Pierantozzi for President. The initial letter sent to Palau Election Commission from Senator Joel Toribiong on Senate letterhead was signed by Senator Toribiong as Campaign Manager of the Committee to Elect Sandra Pierantozzi. [/restrict]