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Record Number Of NZers Enrolled For Election

For immediate release 1 August 2002

RECORD NUMBER OF NEW ZEALANDERS ENROLLED FOR GENERAL ELECTION

New Zealand Post's Electoral Enrolment Centre (EEC) has announced that around 160,665 more eligible electors enrolled for this year's general election than for the 1999 election.

EEC is responsible for compiling and maintaining the electoral rolls. National Manager Murray Wicks said a total of 2,670,030 people enrolled for this year's election.

"This compares with the 2,509,365 that enrolled for the 1999 election," Mr Wicks said. "The overall level of enrolment is also up on the last election with 94.8 per cent of the eligible voting population enrolled this year while 91.1 per cent of eligible electors enrolled in 1999."

Mr Wicks said this level of enrolment compares favourably internationally.

"In terms of enrolment comparison using the most recent statistics available: in 1998, 85.88 per cent of eligible Australian voters were enrolled, while 51.22 per cent of eligible Americans were enrolled for the 2000 Presidential elections. In Canada, 89.31 per cent of eligible voters enrolled in 2000 when the country's most recent general election was held."

Mr Wicks said EEC was pleased with the level of enrolment achieved for this year's election. He believed that one of the main reasons for the increase was that enrolling was so quick and simple to do.

"The ability to enrol online or download enrolment forms from the elections website has made it easy for people with access to the internet to enrol at anytime and from anywhere," said Mr Wicks.

"Other enhancements like the option to fax enrolment forms back has also proved to be popular, while the introduction of a simpler enrolment form earlier this year has made it easier, particularly for first time electors, to complete."

Mr Wicks reminded people to keep their enrolment record up-to-date for any future election events. Change of address and enrolment forms are available from PostShops, by phoning 0800 ENROL NOW (0800 36 76 56) or from the elections website www.elections.org.nz.

"While this year's election is now over, we're also keen to encourage the 146,010 of unenrolled eligible electors to enrol so they don't miss out on the chance to vote in the future."

Mr Wicks said that during this year's enrolment campaign, EEC handled 33,021 calls to its 0800 number for enrolment forms while the elections website received around 3.27m hits. Around 80,000 electors enrolled or updated their enrolment details at the site.

ENDS


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