ECJ steps up election preparations

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The Electoral Commission of Jamaica (ECJ) is now in a position to intensify preparations for the General Elections as it has received the first tranche of the $350 million it requested from the Ministry of Finance
Some $200 million was released by the Ministry on Wednesday afternoon following a meeting of the ECJ.
The remaining $150 million is expected next month.
This was confirmed by Chairman of the Electoral Commission, Professor Errol Miller.
He told our news centre with the funds now in place the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) will move into high gear in preparing for the elections.
 "We will immediately move into gear and hope that we get the remainder as soon as possible because our job is to get the system ready for an election," Professor Miller said.
The People's National Party had warned the Government against calling the elections without first providing the EoJ with the funds it requested.
Director of Elections, Orrette Fisher, wrote to Financial Secretary Dr. Wesley Hughes last month stating that the ECJ needed the funds urgently as General Elections could be called at any time.
The bulk of the money will be used to recruit and train Election Day workers as well as purchase equipment.
In the meantime, with the electoral system going into full preparation mode the ECJ will again meet next week.
Professor Miller says it is likely that the Commission will meet weekly until the preparations are completed.
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