The Commission wishes to advise that:
By the Election Rules, First Schedule, the Representation of the People (Amendment) Act 2002, the requirements for a valid nomination are laid out in Rules 9 – 12, which essentially provide for:
- Nomination on a separate paper, with full names, place of residence, description of the candidate;
- The nomination paper to be subscribed, in the presence of the returning officer, by a proposer and seconder, along with eight (8) other electors (with their electoral numbers) who reside in the constituency;
- Each subscriber is only capable of subscribing to the nomination of one (1) candidate;
- The candidate has to give written consent to nomination, by Form 4;
- Payment of a deposit of $500.00 by the candidate.
An objection can be made to the returning officer, by an elector, within the constituency, that a nomination of a candidate is invalid; this must be settled in a reasonable time, no later than one (1) hour, after the objection was made.
It must be noted that the law permits challenges to the validity of a nomination, by an elector in two (2) instances only, namely and as provided by Rule 15 (2):
(a)”:…..that the particulars of the candidate or the persons subscribing the paper are not as required by law; and
(b) that the paper is not subscribed as so required by law….”
The latitude given to a returning officer, as regards objections and/or challenges to the nomination of a candidate, relate to matters arising only from information provided on the nomination paper – the particulars and the manner in which it was subscribed.
The law gives no scope or authority for the returning officer to entertain any other reasons for an objection, except as stated above.
Additionally, any decision by a returning officer can only be questioned on an election petition.