Number of petitions makes us a joke

Tuesday July 29, 2014 Published in Letters to the Editor
Number of petitions makes us a joke

Dear Editor, The increasing regularity of post-election petitions in our Cook Island voting system has become a big joke now.

In other parts of the world, they just highjack ballot boxes or blow people up to show their dislike for a candidate and his/her supporters. Thank God we don’t do that here.

Recently, amid claims and counter claims of bribery and illegal voting, the Murienua by-election held in February had to be conducted a second time before the court declared James Beer of the Democratic Party the winner.

Editor, the aftermath of the July 9 snap election result produced an unprecedented mother-of-all-petitions where more than a third of the 24-seat Cook Islands Parliament came under fire.

A triumphant Prime Minister-elect Henry Puna, on his return from Manihiki, expressed a sense of urgency and his willingness to pick up the pieces where he wiped the Parliamentary table clear of very crucial legislative matters by dissolving Parliament on April 16 buoyed by a 13-seat majority and the welcome return of all his ministers,

He will, however, find out that his tenure to a Prime Minister position will not happen yet, because a warrant of misconduct during the election has been served on him and two of his ministers by the Democratic Party. On the other hand, defeated Wilkie Rasmussen, Leader of the Opposition, has taken the cudgels to Willie John.

With all roads now leading to the court house where more money is needed to pay the lawyers, spare a thought for the handful of now broke, exhausted disgruntled supporters who braved the hectic short space of punishing fundraising with no clear picture of who will be what and when – the question remains where to now?

Dennis Tunui


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