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fraud watch Portmore added to EOJ security list
Anderson, Staff Reporter
ELECTORAL officials refine security measures for the Local
Govern-ment elections, two constituencies in the new Portmore
municipality have been added to the Electoral Office of Ja-maica's
(EOJ) 'watch list' for the upcoming polls.
public relations officer, Neville Graham, said that the areas
of St. Catherine Southern and parts of St. Catherine South
Central in which the Portmore division falls have now been
designated "specialist status" bringing to 10 the
number of such areas islandwide.
divisions are those polling divisions which receive closer
scrutiny under election conditions, especially regarding the
delivery and collection of ballot boxes. The areas also attract
special security arrangements while specially trained election
day personnel are selected and installed.
these, Mr. Graham said, may not necessarily include violence-prone
feature of these areas is that there is usually some aspect
of voter intimidation or even thuggery where persons would
overrun a polling station, steal or stuff ballot boxes,"
he said. "Or (there may also be) just downright skulduggery
or complicity on the part of electoral officials." Previously,
there were eight such areas: St. Catherine Central, parts
of St. Catherine South Central, St. Andrew Eastern, St. Andrew
West Central, Kingston Central, Clarendon Central, St. Andrew
Northern, and St. Andrew South East.
of the communities which will come under special scrutiny
and fall under St. Catherine Southern and St. Catherine South
Central include Greater Portmore East, Braeton, Naggo Head,
Hellshire, Waterford, Edgewater, Bridgeport and Gregory Park.
Graham explained that following on the 2002 General Election,
increased measures were put in place to limit this behaviour.
cautious about revealing details of any security plan, Mr.
Graham said that certain features were already set up to ensure
a smooth process.
are working closely with the police top brass and have been
meeting regularly with them for debriefing sessions following
the 2002 elections," he said.
the local level, the returning officers have developed a very
good working relationship with the police with a view to being
able to more readily highlight potential 'trouble spots',"
he said. "Right now we are confident that they know what
we want and we are comfortable that they will be able to put
in place the necessary strategy to achieve this."
addition he said, a cadre of 'handpicked, well-trained, highly
intelligent' individuals have been recruited by the EOJ to
work as presiding officers to be deployed to these areas.