Updated 5.25pm

Former Chief Electoral Commissioner Joseph Church has died at the age of 65, the government said on Monday.

Appointed at the helm of the commission in 2014, Church stepped down last July when he reached retirement age and was succeeded by Joseph Camilleri.

In a statement, the government saluted the memory of Church, saying he would be remembered for his role in the introduction of the electronic vote-counting system during the 2019 European and council elections. It was also during his tenure as commission chief that the voting age was lowered to 16 years.

Having joined the public service in 1977, he served as director-general of corporate services within the health department before being appointed secretary to President George Abela in 2010. He studied diplomacy at the University of Malta between 1996 and 1998 and management and human resources between 2002 and 2004. 

The Labour and Nationalist parties also expressed their condolences for the loss of the former Chief Electoral Commissioner.

In a separate statement, Speaker of the House An─ílu Farrugia saluted his memory, thanking him for his work to ensure parliamentary democracy.

His funeral will be held on Wednesday at 2pm at the Sanctuary of the Divine Mercy in Naxxar.


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