New Zealander to observe Trinidad and Tobago election
29 August 2015
PR: New Zealander to observe Trinidad and Tobago election
EMBARGOED UNTIL 17:00, SATURDAY, 29 AUGUST 2015 NZ STANDARD TIME
At the invitation of the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, a team of Commonwealth election observers will arrive in Port of Spain this week ahead of the general election scheduled for 7 September 2015.
The independent Commonwealth Observer Group (COG), which was constituted by the Commonwealth Secretary-General, Kamalesh Sharma, will be chaired by Hon Sir Paul Tovua, former Speaker of the Solomon Islands Parliament, and includes Aaron Hape, Commonwealth Youth New Zealand Executive Director.
“It is an absolute privilege to join this group of eminent persons drawn from across the Commonwealth,” said Mr Hape.
“As independent observers, our mandate is to assess the pre-election period, activities on polling day and the post-election period.
"Throughout, the Group will consider whether there has been a level playing field for the contesting parties, whether voters were free to express their will, and whether the election can be said to have been credible, transparent and peaceful.
“I’m looking forward to the challenge and the opportunity to learn from the experience of my colleagues in the Group”
Mr Hape, 24, and the Group will arrive in Trinidad and Tobago on Monday, 31 August and depart onFriday, 11 September.