Office of Electoral Commission leads push for youth engagement in voting
The Office of the Electoral Commission (O.E.C) is working with the National University of Samoa’s Student Association (N.U.S.S.A) to elect new officials for the upcoming school year 2018.
The partnership is the first of its kind and it’s a move applauded by both the O.E.C and N.U.S.
O.E.C and N.U.S.S.A are running the nomination for the N.U.S.S.A board election together under a new structure with professional expertise from the Electoral Commissioner’s Office themselves.
“This year will be different for the N.U.S.S.A’s election for there will be some changes in how the students vote for the board,” says Makereta Vaaelua of O.E.C.
“There will be no more raising and counting hands done but this time will be professional like how the main voting for the parliament’s election is carried out.”
The goal is to familiarize the students with how to vote during the national election and to understand more about the voting system before they turn twenty-one and exercise their right to vote.
This is the benefit for N.U.S as a significant part of the voters in elections happen to be youth and for those educated in the University it’s a must to know what to do when they head into the polls.
The nomination is being processed within two weeks for all faculties before the voting and election.
The president of N.U.S.S.A, Alex Meafou acknowledged the support from O.E.C for promoting their work.
They will officially announce the board members of the N.U.S.S.A in the final week of October.
“I’m just proud that the new idea has good timing as we will be welcoming the Media and Journalism to their specific chair on the board,” says Alex.
The Media and Journalism Programme has appointed a member to sit on a special seat within N.U.S.S.A handling all media demands for the reigning N.U.S.S.A board.
Meafou says this is a huge improvement for N.U.S.S.A and the students of the National University of Samoa in their role of student support.
*Talaia Mika is a first year student of the Media and Journalism Programme and is the appointment member of the programme within N.U.S.S.A.