…are in for a special treat this week. Last Friday, I received a letter from the Electoral Commission, confirming what I’d been suspecting just last week: I am one of some 960 voters who have been unceremoniously chopped off the list of eligible voters for the EU parliamentary elections next month. This morning I finally managed to go to Victoria before work to appeal against this, as advised in that letter (well at least they DID send that!). The deadline for the appeal is Friday 8th May.
After cruising around the blocks around St Francis Square for about 15 minutes, I gratefully slipped into a just-vacated parking spot and made my way to the Electoral Office (known as ID card office at normal times) and dutifully presented my ID card (ca. 2 years expired, by the way, and no replacement in sight haha) and then was asked for my passport. Um… the letter hadn’t mentioned passports?! Minor hurdle though, I can phone in the number tomorrow morning. Phew!
Two filled-in forms and 3 signatures later, I was given a photocopy of one of the forms and was told to present it at the court’s registry. No kidding! It’s an appeal, isn’t it? So why go to fill in the form at the Electoral Office? Stupid question: it would be too easy, wouldn’t it? Bleh. So more cruising on four wheels, this time around the citadel, before breaking down: I parked illegally and swore I’d send any ticket coming my way, up to Castille! Miraculously, I got away scot-free. I meandered through the ground floor of the law courts I arrived at the registry and was done in a matter of minutes. Of course I didn’t receive any written confirmation that I spent a whole bloody hour to get back what’s rightfully mine. Coincidentally, hubby and son received their voting doc’s today – leaving me to wonder whether I’ll get mine, eventually.
I arrived at work, 20 minutes late. I usually get there early and leave late, so that’s no major disaster. But it really makes my blood boil how all government bodies (and to-date I haven’t encountered any exceptions) assume that “ordinary” people have nothing better to do than running from pillar to post to satisfy the demands of their silly bureaucracy!
Oh, and by the way… Could someone possibly explain to this blonde woman why she had been on that register in the first place – and allowed to vote last time round – without even ever asking for it??
If you’re crazy enough to want to know more about voting obsessions made in Malta, Daphne has written an excellent piece about just that!
Update 9th May 2009
Published Yesterday, 20:45 in The Times of Malta:
PM asks Electoral Commission to take remedial action
The procedure used by the Electoral Commission to cancel 945 people from the 2004 and 2009 EU Electoral Register was unlawful and not according to procedure, the Attorney General has told the Prime Minister.
Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi had asked the AG’s office for advice about the legality of the cancellation of 945 persons from the EU Electoral Register.
In a letter sent to Dr Gonzi today, the AG said that voters entered on the electoral roll had to remain on the register under the same conditions as nationals until they requested to be removed or until they no longer satisfied the requirements to exercise their right to vote.
In a letter to the Electoral Commission this evening, the Prime Minister said that the situation should be remedied for these people to be able to vote.
He said that as the EP elections were due soon, he expected the commission’s proposals on how this could be done, by Monday.
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