Power 106FM Local Election News, Wednesday December 5 - Update 8pm

Written by JamaicaElections.com

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new-power-logo.JPG EOJ on vote count…

Director of Elections Danville Walker reported that results are expected in the counting centres by 7:30 p.m., and election results for all divisions should be known by 10:30 p.m.

He also said that 90 per cent of the 6,376 polling stations opened at 7a.m. this morning. Although voting was slow except for the Braeton Division in Portmore, St. Catherine. The polls closed at 7p.m.

Mr. Walker also said he’s yet to recieve reports about the malfunctioning voter identification systems in some divisions today.

According to the EOJ, electoral officials and the police kept a close watch on some trouble spots where there were few incidents. These included the blocking of a road off Mountain View Avenue, St. Andrew.

Political Ombudsman, Bishop Herro Blair also reported that electors voted without problems in a number of polling divisions across the corporate area.

MAJ on media fees
Several radio and television member stations of the Media Association of Jamaica (MAJ), will not be carrying continuous results from the Local Government polls this evening.

The MAJ says this is due to the fee being imposed by the Electoral Office of Jamaica to receive the information.

The Association’s members which include the Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre, CVM Communications Group and the RJR Communications Group say they have been charged fees of between $150,000 and $400,000 per radio or television entity in order to receive the continuous results.

Media houses that have not agreed to pay the fees have been denied access to install equipment at the EOJ’s counting centre in New Kingston.

The MAJ has described the decision by the EOJ as a major blow to free access to public information and notes that it also has all the signs of a strike against press freedom.

It further notes that taxpayers, including the media and media workers’ funds are used to pay to run an election but additional charges are being levelled to receive reasonable updates on the results of the election.

In his response the Director of Elections Danville Walker said the fees were only being charged to access the results information online.

Mr. Walker added that members of the media would be able to access the results, which will be announced by the returning officers.

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