Joint security forces on challenges faced

The Joint Security Forces deployed to the Vanimo-Green River electorate, in West Sepik Province, are not impressed by the delays on ground, especially with counting.

“Security on the ground consists of 13 Special Services Division personnel, 10 PNG Defence Force personnel and 50 local policemen and women who have been ready since Monday,” members of the team told Loop PNG.

“Only the Electoral Commission knows the reason behind these delays.”

Counting for the electorate was scheduled to start yesterday but was deferred to this morning.

Apart from that, the extraction of ballot boxes was also postponed.

“16 boxes from remote Green River were supposed to be airlifted due to bad road conditions but the elections manager said there were no funds,” Loop PNG was told.

 “So we, the security forces, took the risk and traveled by road to do the extraction. It took us 8 hours to reach Green River, and 8 hours back to Vanimo.

“The Electoral Commissioner is boasting in the media that everything is on track but we here in the remote areas are struggling to make the impossible possible.”

Meanwhile, Vanimo-Green River counting officials are currently undergoing training while members of the force are preparing to escort the first lot of ballot boxes from the Vanimo police station to the counting venue.

Counting will be at the Vanimo field open grandstand. 

Carmella Gware