If counting votes on the same day of voting is favorably received by the political class, they are however divided on the question of transferring the ballot boxes to a single center for counting votes.

“We do not want the counting to be done on site, in each school. We think it will be a big mistake, a big blow to national unity,” said the leader of the Mauritian Social Democratic Party (PMSD), Xavier-Luc Duval.

According to him, it is inappropriate to know which locality voted for or against a party. “Because consciously or unconsciously, such an exercise can lead to discrimination for voters, for work, for the development of the region, etc. “, he said.

Counting in each school would also not allow, according to Xavier-Luc Duval, for political parties to exercise adequate control over this exercise. “In my constituency, for example, I should have control over the counting in twenty places to ensure that there is no deviation from the procedure. I can't be in twenty schools at the same time. If the counting is done in a single school, it is much easier for me to check in twenty classes,” he adds.

The former opposition leader adds that we must ensure that the transport of ballot boxes is done in suitable conditions. It offers a “reasonably simple” procedure. “Political parties can put their seals on the ballot boxes and organize so that the trucks transporting them are checked and followed by political agents to the center where the counting will take place,” he recommends.

Counting in each school is an idea that Rezistans ek Alternativ (ReA) also opposes. This is also one of their three major concerns. “Fundamentally, it is not a problem which region voted for which party, but Mauritius being what it is, we fear experiences of stigmatization and victimization after the elections,” says Ashok Subron, spokesperson by Rezistans ek Alternativ.

For him, the best thing would be to postpone this idea of ​​counting on the same day for later. “We are not against it, but given the concerns raised, the best would be to collect all opinions, debate and put it in place for possible next general elections,” he explains.

“Out of question”

At the level of the Labor Party – Mauritian Militant Movement – New Democrats (PTR-MMM-ND) alliance, there is no question of transferring the ballot boxes. “We want the minimum possible manipulation of the ballot boxes. There should therefore be no transport of ballot boxes. Kouma is an active driver, working with a truck. It's 'out of question',” says Ajay Gunness, deputy leader of the MMM, present during the meeting with the electoral commissioner, Irfan Rahman.

The electoral commission office is not sure if it will have the staff required to carry out the counting on the same day. And Ajay Gunness believes that it will not be a problem if the exercise is done the next day, as is normally the case.

“Whether the counting is done on the same day or the day after, the main thing is to eliminate the risk of manipulation of ballot boxes during their transfer to a single center, thus reducing the risk of electoral fraud,” he maintains. . “Even if we are heading towards 'same day counting', according to the electoral commissioner, the result in certain constituencies could be declared around 2 or 3 hours. Be li pou deza le landemin,” he remarks.

The extra-parliamentary party, Linion Moris, also speaks out against the convergence of ballot boxes towards a single center for counting votes. Among the points put forward, the uncertainty around the vehicles used to ensure the transfer. “During our meeting with the Election Commissioner, Irfan Rahman himself confirmed that Special Mobile Force vehicles were never used for the transfer of ballot boxes. These are usually vehicles from the Ministry of National Infrastructure or other state ministries and departments,” he says.

“Whether for the 2019 elections or previous years, what haven’t we heard? Sipa kamion inn bouze, pan reysi sirveye, inn arete pou sanz larou ou byen inn rant dan karo kann. All you need to know is everything,” he adds.

Not to mention, he says, that it is a very big logistical problem for the electoral commission. According to him, there are fewer and fewer vehicles, with ministries opting for rental rather than purchasing vehicles. “On the other hand, we also wonder to what extent we can trust those who will be responsible for moving the ballot boxes and the logistics. No one can say they have 100% confidence in everyone who will work. In an election where we have to give 99% confidence, that's already low. »


In order to preserve the anonymity of the votes, another concern of the PTR-MMM-ND alliance, it is suggested that the ballots be mixed before carrying out the counting exercise. “If in a classroom, those whose names start with A to D voted, we could easily know which families voted for a party. Then, elected officials could settle their scores, which we do not want,” observes Ajay Guness.

However, for Linion Moris, knowing which region voted for or against the elected party would not be a problem. “Only politicians of the old school will think of sulking or stigmatizing the inhabitants of these regions. If Linion Moris is elected, we consider these regions as being those where we must, on the contrary, redouble our efforts during our mandate to convince the electorate,” declares Dev Sunnasy.

Staff renewal

Ashok Subron, spokesperson for Rezistans ek Alternativ, believes that non-renewal of staff if counting is done on the same day will be a problem. He took as an example the village of Chemin-Grenier where, during the last village elections, the results were declared at 2:40 a.m. when there were only around 6,000 voters. “However, for the general elections, several constituencies have more than 40,000 voters. If the same staff will be working from start to finish, that will be a problem. »


Ashok Subron is of the view that declaring results late in the evening or early morning carries security risks. “As long as the proclamation is made during the day, there is no problem. But if it's in the evening, there is a risk of slipping. Because we don’t see what’s happening,” he says.

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