The Electoral Commission insisted on Sunday that it did not distinguish among voters in the electoral register and said it was public officers who had the duty to inform it of any names who should not be there.

It was reacting to a Facebook post by Nationalist candidate Jason Azzopardi on Saturday claiming that prisoners who had lost their right to vote because they had been sentenced to five, seven and 10 years in jail had been allowed to do so in early voting on Saturday, in breach of the law.

Azzopardi said that prisoners who were known Nationalists and who were serving the same sentence were, however, not issued a voting document.

The commission said in its statement that the February electoral register is being used for this election and it is “substantially correct”. 

It said it depended on several sources to keep the register up to date and could not delete or include voters unless the strict procedures and requisites would have been followed.

It said it was public officers in the civil service and other officials in all bodies set up by law who were duty-bound to give the commission all the information required so that it could be able to check whether a person had the right to be registered as a voter or not.

It insisted it had always acted according to law and could not keep anyone whose name appeared in the register from voting. 

Court registrar, minister have lot to answer for - PN

In a reaction to the commission’s statement, the Nationalist Party blamed the court registrar for the shortcoming, accusing him of breaching the law for months by not informing the commission of people not eligible to vote.

This person, it said, had been politically appointed by Justice Minister Edward Zammit Lewis and Zammit Lewis himself had a lot to explain for such grievous law-breaking.

The PN said that all those who wanted to protect democracy in Malta should vote PN on Saturday.

“For the sake of democracy. For Malta,” it said.

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