Electoral fraud in Papatoetoe

The Herald reports:

Police are investigating a possible attempt to influence the Super City election in which nearly 90 voters have been enrolled as living in two houses.

The Weekend Herald can reveal 48 voters are listed as living in one home and 39 are enrolled as living in another property in the same South Auckland suburb.

This is an old trick in the more southern parts of Auckland, and has been exposed in the past through electoral petitions. I have no knowledge of the specifics in this case, but the electoral petitions in the past have shown this to be an exclusive party activity.

Daljit Singh said Labour was not asking people to falsely enrol in the area to vote for him, and described rumours suggesting this was happening as part of a smear campaign.

He said several local Sikhs had told him members had encouraged them to sign up in Papatoetoe, despite living elsewhere, and to mention Mr Singh’s name to arouse suspicion.

Mr Singh should get affidavits from these local Sikhs, and make sure they include the names of these alleged C&R members who said to sign up, and mention his name. If he is not willing to do this, well it makes you wonder that he is so quick to explain why his name is linked to this .

Daljit Singh believed some families from outside Papatoetoe could have mistakenly listed themselves as living with relatives inside the board boundaries, because their English was poor.

Goodness, for something which is nothing at all to do with him, he does have many theories about why it may have happened.

Of the 48 people listed at the Puhinui Rd address, 45 have Sikh surnames.

Owner Baljit Kaur said eight people lived at the home. She planned to vote for and said her family and friends would probably also vote for him.

What a coincidence.

Electoral Enrolment Centre national manager Murray Wicks said it was possible for a large number of people to be mistakenly listed at the same address if enrolment details were not updated.

“However, we believe there are some irregularities, particularly in the Papatoetoe area,” he said.

“We have objected in writing to the individuals concerned, regarding their eligibility to be enrolled there.

“We’ve challenged the people involved and we’ll see where that leads us.”

If the voters could not prove they lived at the listed address, they would be removed from the electoral roll.

Asked if the irregularities seemed aimed at influencing the election of candidates to the Papatoetoe board, Mr Wicks said: “We don’t know at this stage. We have informed the police and they are undertaking an investigation as well.”

Well done to the Electoral Enrolment Centre for their vigilance. No matter who is behind this, I want them exposed and prosecuted. Sure it is unlikely that 100 extra enrolments will make a major difference, but there is no amount of electoral fraud which is tolerable.

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