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Voter rolls accurate: Comfrel

Comfrel members hold a press conference on their recent audit of the NEC’s new voter list yesterday in Phnom Penh.
Comfrel members hold a press conference on their recent audit of the NEC’s new voter list yesterday in Phnom Penh.

Voter rolls accurate: Comfrel

Two election monitoring groups have conducted an audit of National Election Committe-issued NEC voter lists in 252 communes and found them to be 98 percent accurate, potentially quelling, at least in part, past anxieties over the quality and veracity of these lists.

Political parties, especially the opposition, have long complained of voter names missing from the lists or the inclusion of ghost voters, with a similar 2011 survey by election monitor Comfrel showing that 17 percent of respondents could not find their names on the voter lists.

Having surveyed around 2,700 voters, Comfrel and fellow monitoring group NICFEC said they were unable to verify only 2 percent of them, clarifying that this did not mean those entries had been compromised.

“The new voter list does not have any ghost names. The previous lists had some dead people as well whose names had not been deleted,” said NICFEC's Sam Kuntheamy. He added that he was pleased with the quality of the voter list which was a good sign for the upcoming commune election in June.

The groups used two methods to verify the voter data they used the existing list to do a door-to-door check and then the reverse, where they first collected voter details and then cross checked it against all eligible voters.

In the 250-odd communes surveyed, they found voter registration to be at 89 percent, which was higher than the NEC’s national registration count of 81 percent.

Comfrel’s Korn Savan said the voter list was better than he had seen in the past, but that this was only one factor in ensuring a free and fair election come June 4.

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