Saturday, 3 June 2017

Electoral Fraud & the local media

THE letter below was sent to Nothern Voices yesterday, it is a copy of the letter originally sent to the editor of ROCHDALE ONLINE.  It was published on the ROCHDALE ONLINE website yesterday.   We re-print this letter for the benefit of our readers in order to raise awareness of a problem improper conduct by some in the electoral process.  We understand that a letteron the same issue has been sent to the Rochdale Observer.  We have the author, Carl Faulkner's permission to reprint this letter.
 
Dear Editor,
 
As I read the recent article ‘Voters urged to be on alert to the risk of electoral fraud’, the old adage ‘action speaks louder than words’, came to mind.
 
All the regulations, telephone numbers and guidance is of no use if those involved are keen to brush it under the carpet.
 
For that is what has happened here in Rochdale.  Anti-fraud documentation mysteriously disappeared from a Rochdale polling station (Spotland and Falinge ward) before the count took place. None of the candidates were informed; the Electoral Commission were not informed; neither were the police; councillors were not interested.
 
It was only by chance that I actually discovered what had happened. And so, I duly informed those tasked with investigating such matters. The Electoral Commission incorrectly told me there was nothing they could do.  The police decided not to investigate because the council had told them they were treating the missing anti-fraud documentation as lost property. The council had no issues with the person tasked with overseeing the election (Acting Returning Officer). Job done. Panic over.
 
If anyone has any concerns about potential electoral fraud, do not think that by simply reporting the matter, a concerted effort will be made to get to the bottom of it. Be prepared to hold those responsible to task.
 
Regards
 
Carl Faulkner

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