SUPERVISOR OF ELECTIONS WARNS AGAINST “TREATING”
Political campaigning is well on the way for the yet to be announced general elections of the Turks and Caicos Islands and the Supervisor of Elections take the opportunity of reminding Candidates, Political Parties or anyone associated with them of the need to comply with the provisions of the Election Ordinance, and in particular he reminds what is expected by virtue of Section 70 of the said Ordinance which reads:
“Every person who corruptly by himself or other person, either before, during or after an election, directly or indirectly, gives or provides or pays wholly or in part the expenses of giving or providing any food, drink, entertainment or provision to or for any person for the purpose of corruptly, influencing that person or any other person to vote or refrain from voting at such election or on account of such person or any other person having voted or refrained from voting at such election and this behavior is known as “Treating” is illegal”.
The Supervisor also explained that “Treating” has been illegal for many years, especially as it relates to giving out Hams and Turkeys at Christmas time.
In the past, leading up to the General Election some people chose to ignore the offense of Treating and such behavior he said is no longer ignored.
The person offering this kind of inducement is committing a serious criminal offence and so is any member of the public who accepts a gift or cash.
The Supervisor has also warned that he will follow up upon all reports received and will not hesitate to collaborate with the Police to initiate criminal investigation.
Political Party bodies and Candidates should make it known throughout their organization or campaign machinery of the need to comply with the law so as to uphold the law and ensure a level playing field between campaigns in the best interest of voters in the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Lister Dudley Lewis
Supervisor of Elections