GE2020 non-voter list ready for inspection; delay for one district

The list of voters who failed to cast their votes in the July general election is available for inspection, but some voters in Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC can do so only after Jan 10 next year.

The reason is that the list of voters in one polling district in the GRC will be published later because of a mistake by an election official, said the Elections Department (ELD) yesterday.

The election official at the Elias Park Primary School Counting Centre "had inadvertently placed the copy of the register of electors for the polling district PN23 of the electoral division of Pasir Ris-Punggol... together with the counted ballot papers and other documents into the ballot box which was sealed", the ELD said in a statement.

The sealed box is now kept in the Supreme Court vault, it added.

Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC saw a three-cornered fight that was won by the People's Action Party team led by Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean.

The ELD explained that under the Parliamentary Elections Act, all the sealed boxes containing counted ballot papers and documents relating to the general election must be kept in safe custody until they are destroyed six months after the date of the polls.

"During the six-month period, only a judge of the High Court can order the sealed boxes to be opened and their contents inspected, and even then, it can only be for the purpose of instituting or maintaining a prosecution or an application to invalidate an election," the ELD said.

President Halimah Yacob has directed the Returning Officer to retrieve the copy of the register of voters of the affected polling district on or after Jan 10 next year.

She has also directed that the copy be destroyed no later than 30 days after it has been retrieved.

Voters on the delayed list can apply to the ELD as usual to have their names restored to the register of electors.

Eligible voters who failed to cast their votes on July 10 have been removed from the register, under the Parliamentary Elections Act. They are ineligible to vote or stand as a candidate in future elections if their names are not restored.

Those with legitimate reasons for not voting do not have to pay a penalty to have their names restored. Otherwise, they have to pay $50 to get back on the register.

The list of non-voters can be inspected at the Elections Department, designated community centres or community clubs, or Singapore overseas missions that serve as overseas registration centres.

Singaporeans may also check their elector status electronically on the ELD website or on the SingPass Mobile app.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 06, 2020, with the headline GE2020 non-voter list ready for inspection; delay for one district. Subscribe