Fear of money politics ahead of polling day

Fear of money politics ahead of polling day


As the 24 hours campaign blackout edges closer to 12am tonight, a concerned constituent from West Guadalcanal Constituency is appealing to his fellow constituents to refrain from accepting money or any form of bribery from candidates contesting the April 17th Joint Election.

The constituent who asked to remain anonymous made the call to maintain the integrity of the joint election.

“I appeal to all voters in West Guadalcanal to refrain from accepting money from candidates as it is against the electoral act. It is important that community leaders within our constituency remind voters of this.”

He also calls on contesting candidates to conduct fair and clean campaigns.

“As we are approaching devils’ night or black out night, I also appeal to candidates to maintain clean campaigning.”

“Bribery is not a sign of good leadership so as your voters we ask that candidates must lead by example and do away with bribery,” he said.

Speaking at a talk back show yesterday, Director General of the Solomon Islands Independent Commission Against Corruption (SIICAC), John Kouni explains the three main forms of bribery in the electoral act.

“Firstly, where a person including a candidate, or an agent promises to give or give benefits to someone to influence them to vote for them. Secondly, where someone approaches a candidate asking benefits and therefore gives them where it influences their vote at the end of the day.  And lastly, where a third party comes in. This is where someone puts themselves in the position to give somebody benefits to vote for a person of their choice. “

“So, these are the three main forms of bribery that people need to be aware of. And we will be working closely with the Electoral Commission and Police, as these are criminal offences, to enforce it,” said Kouni.

Under section 126 of the Electoral Act, a person found to be committing the bribery offence is liable to pay a fine of up to 150,000 dollars or imprisonment for 15 years, or both.

SIICAC have also advised the public to report any election bribery and corruption during the elections on Phone 26832.


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