Seychelles Electoral Commission inaugurates Delimitation of Boundaries Committee
Lucas said it is important to look at the number of inhabitants in each electoral area when it comes to the delimitation exercise. (Seychelles News Agency)
The Electoral Commission of Seychelles has inaugurated a Delimitation of Boundaries Committee tasked with providing data necessary to establish how extensively electoral boundaries are to be adjusted in the country.
The chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Danny Lucas, outlined on Friday that it is important to look at the number of inhabitants in each electoral area when it comes to the delimitation exercise.
"Our mandate and mission under the Constitution is to have a continuous review of electoral boundaries and if we come to a point where we deem it necessary to redistribute electoral boundaries or create additional electoral areas should there be a need, we will do so as far as it is reasonable and practicable," said Lucas.
"We have seen through statistics, especially after the national population's census, that there is an imbalance in population numbers in each electoral area. Together with the imbalance we have seen in the distribution of registered voters, we have found it necessary to adjust certain electoral boundaries with the possibility of creating new electoral areas," continued Lucas.
He added that one of the reasons for setting up the committee lies in ensuring there is transparency as proposals are based on a set of facts and necessity due to changes that have happened within the population, rather than politically motivated.
"We want to use experts that have particularities to assist us," said Lucas.
The Delimitation of Boundaries Committee consists of 10 members with representatives from the Electoral Commission, the Attorney General's office, the National Bureau of Statistics, the land transport department, the Ministry of Lands and Housing, and the local government department. The initiative to set up the committee started in 2021.
Historical and cultural factors, past boundaries, existing and future road networks, infrastructures, and facilities will be looked at by the committee during the exercise.
The delimitation exercise and its report are expected to be completed before January 2024, when the next Commission's report to the president is due.
"We want to open the exercise to the public as well. We cannot conduct an exercise that will affect the nation as a whole without gathering the input of everyone who wants to do so. We will make requests to certain organisations such as political parties, MNAs(members of the National Assembly), and NGOs, who will be interested to make contributions. Their submissions will be considered before the committee presents its proposals to the Electoral Commission," said Lucas.
Once work has been completed, the Delimitation of Boundaries Committee will submit its report to the Electoral Commission, which will in turn produce a provisional report based on which consultative meetings with the public will be launched.
The final report will be sent to the President and the National Assembly.