More than a year after the last election not one of the many cases of possible electoral fraud referred to police by the Electoral Commission has gone to court.
Police are sitting on more than twenty open investigations referred to them for prosecution under the Electoral Act by the Electoral Commission.
Truth has obtained details under the Official Information Act that reveal Police seem to have no interest in prosecuting offences and breaches of the Electoral Act.
Of the 32 cases referred, 6 have lapsed because the prosecution time limit has expired.
62 dual vote referrals remain open and un-prosecuted.
Headline cases referred by the Electoral Commission that remain open with little or no progress are the Green party worker Jolyon White’s alleged vandalism of National’s signs at the 2011 election, several of Labour’s flyers including their ‘Stop Asset Sales’, ‘Prices are Rising faster than wages’ and ‘Ohariu Census’ pamphlets.
Only 3 cases have been closed, with no action or prosecution resulting. . .
The integrity of our elections depends on all involved as candidates, voters and in administration obeying the law.
Those who don’t should face consequences and that should happen in a timely manner.
If, as is obvious, the police either can’t or don’t want to deal with breeches of the electoral law another body must be given the powers to do so.
TRUTH believes Edgeler is on the money, for minor offences substantial fines against political parties and individuals that break Electoral Law need to be instant and issued by the Electoral Commission, for larger breaches like Labour’s 2005 pledge card rort an Independent Commission Against Corruption needs to be established, not unlike Australia has.
To continue with blatant and repeated breaches remaining unpunished encourages political corruption, we need to maintain our top position in the Transperency International corruption rankings as the least corrupt nation in the world. Enforcing the law would go a long way to achieving this.
Whichever body or bodies get the powers to deal with alleged breeches of electoral law must have the means to act during the election period before election day or very soon after it.
Justice delayed in these cases could potentially alter election results.