Candidates in Tanintharyi worry about potential ballot box tampering

22 October 2015
Candidates in Tanintharyi worry about potential ballot box tampering
 A ballot box at the polling station in Yangon. Photo: Mizzima

A lack of safeguards to protect the integrity of ballot boxes used during the advanced voting process could lead to ballot stuffing and other unscrupulous practices, warn opposition candidates running for office in Tanintharyi Region’s Kawthoung Constituency No. 2.
After candidates were invited to inspect the ballot boxes used in the advanced voting process, it was found there was a lack of security for the voting boxes. The matter of how to improve the ballot boxes has been raised by some of the political parties.
Daw Pan Yi, a regional parliament candidate from the Mon National Party is concerned by the apparent lack of safeguards for the ballot boxes. “The ballot box can only be closed from both sides and one can put his or her hand in it. So, they are not secure as votes can be picked out by hand. Police officers, soldiers, and people leaving for abroad are going to take part in the advanced voting”, she said.
Each ballot box has a hole for voters to cast their ballots and anyone can put their hands in those boxes and pick out the ballots so candidates say the true desire of the public will only be reached after the ballot boxes are fixed.
“We have requested that the district office allow us to seal the ballot boxes in order to make them secure and prevent them from being opened. Clips are only put on the two sides of the ballot box for voting so there could be unscrupulous voting. So far, we haven’t received any reply back from them,” said Zaw Min Htike (a) U Kyaw Thu, who is running as an independent candidate.
Tanintharyi Region’s Kawthoung Constituency 2 will have over 80 polling stations.
Courtesy BNI