Final voting deadline looms

As of midnight on Friday, 29 February, there will be no further opportunity to register as a voter in time for Cayman’s anticipated first referendum in May.

Supervisor of Elections Kearney Gomez announced this week that the Elections Office will remain open every night next week – Monday through Thursday until 9pm and Friday until midnight.

This Saturday, 23 February, will be the last time registration facilities are set up at supermarkets before the referendum.

The deadline for registering has already been extended from the usual 1 January until the end of this month. It cannot be extended any further.

Deputy Supervisor of Elections Colford Scott explained why there must be a final cut-off. The Elections Office must produce a Revised List, he said, so that members of the public can check it and make a claim if they believe they should be included, or object if they believe someone is listed who should not be.

Any such claims and objections will be settled by a magistrate, who will visit all districts as necessary. The resulting list will be the one in force in May.

The exact date of the referendum still has not been announced.

Registration efforts to date have produced an average of five or six applications at each registration station on each occasion they have been set up, Elections Office staff reported.

This Saturday the extra stations will be at Hurley’s Supermarket in Grand Harbour and the Foster’s Supermarkets in West Bay, at the Strand, near the Airport and in Countryside Village at Savannah. Hours at these venues are 9am until 1pm.

The Elections Office is open this Saturday from 10am until 2pm. Next week, the hours are 8.30am until 9pm, with Friday extending until midnight. This office is located in Kirk House on Albert Panton Street in downtown George Town, across from the Court House. Extended hours should reduce parking problems, Mr. Gomez said.

He commended the registering officers and support staff for their efforts. ‘Nobody can say we haven’t given them an opportunity to register,’ he said.