Thousands to travel to Savai'i for election

A total of 3800 voters registered in Savai’i but residing in Upolu will be making a ferry trip to the big island ahead of the 9 April national election to cast their ballots. 

Electoral Commissioner Faimalomatumua Mathew Lemisio confirmed the numbers of voters registered in Savai'i while living in Upolu. 

He said that another 38,840 Savai'ian voters are registered residents of the big island.

With less than three weeks to go until the country heads to the polls, the Electoral Commissioner's Office is making final preparations.

To cater for voters making the trip to the big island, the MV Lady Samoa III is likely to make four trips on election day to ensure voters make it to Savaii to cast their ballots. 

The MV Lady Samoa III has a capacity of 840 passengers and can transport over 30 vehicles while the MV Fotu Samoa has a passenger capacity of 120 passengers. 

The newly launched MV Samoa Express II can carry an estimated 200 passengers and 40 vehicles. 

Caretaker Minister of Works Transport and Infrastructure, Papalii Niko Lee Hang said the request for free ferry rides to Savaii on election day is not on the agenda. 

He said the Samoa Shipping Corporation will have to meet and discuss such a decision. 

Polling day has been declared for Friday 9 April and pre-polling scheduled for Monday 5 March to Thursday 8 April. 

The last day for withdrawal of nominations is Friday this week, 26 March.

In a previous correspondence with the Electoral Commissioner, he confirmed the total number of the Electoral Roll for the 2021 General Election is 128,849. 

He noted 3673 deceased voters have been removed from the electoral roll. 

“16,630 are the new voters registered between April 2016 and October 8th 2020,” said Faimalo.

“The final Roll for the 2016 General Election was 115,892. 

“The increase in the number of new voters was the result of our Office field works that took place in 2016 right up to 2020 where we went out to family homes around the country, to each villages, each constituency, work places, schools, universities, churches etc.”   

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