The Antigua and Barbuda Electoral Commission (ABEC) has been busy over the past days processing the requests of people who are seeking constituency transfers and replacement cards ahead of next Wednesday’s polls.
ABEC’s public relations officer, Elisa Graham, said over the last week and a half, the office has processed an average of two hundred requests daily from people who want their voter ID cards replaced or who need to be transferred from one constituency to another.
“We have had to extend our hours of operations up to 6:00pm at both the head office as well as at the registration units in order to facilitate the deluge of requests from voters,” she stated.
Graham explained that the units in all constituencies are able to process the collection of voter identification cards for first-time voters as well as phase one of the request for replacement cards and transfers.
The final stages of those processes are handled at ABEC’s head office.
The ABEC PRO noted that there is a fee of $100.00 for replacement voter ID cards. Applicants must also present valid, government issued ID when collecting the new voter ID card.
Pensioners and applicants who present a letter from the police are exempted from paying the fee.
Meanwhile, Graham explained that anyone seeking constituency transfers at this late stage is unlikely to have this completed in time for the elections next Wednesday.
Additionally, people who register to vote at this time will not be able to participate in next week’s elections as there is a process, which includes a period of claims and objections, before voters’ names are placed on the final Register of Voters.
This process, according to Graham, takes more than a month to complete.
Meanwhile, ABEC has reported that its visit to Barbuda on Tuesday went off without a hitch.
Sixteen people were transferred to the island-constituency’s voter register while ten people reported lost cards had their requests for replacements processed.