Friday, 6 August 2010 9:23 AM

Election Officials Found

Election security officials for Ndei Island, Lau/MBaelelea Constituency, have been found after losing their way to the remote polling station in bad weather and strong currents.

Chief Electoral Officer, Mr Polycarp Haununu, said he was extremely relieved to hear confirmation that the people were safe after being discovered on Santa Isabel, some 100kms off course.

"We were very concerned to discover that officials had not reached Ndei Island to conduct today's delayed polling - and were lost," Mr Haununu said.

Search and rescue maritime were contacted by the Electoral Commission to assist the search for the lost officials who were discovered by another vessel late this afternoon.

The official was a police officer accompanying the ballot box to Ndei Island, together with a driver and crew member.

The Electoral Commission is currently investigating an alternative to transporting the election materials to Ndei Island. Yesterday a chopper was unable to reach the island due to bad weather, forcing a deferment of the election.

"We again request the patience of the voters on Ndei Island while we quickly find another way to transport materials," Mr Haununu said.

Mr Haununu said advised voters to listen to service messages for updated information.