A man walks past campaign posters in Sulaimani. Voters go to the polls on September 30 to elect the regional parliament. Photo: Sartip Othman/Rudaw
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Kurdistan Region’s electoral commission has introduced a new measure it hopes to prevent fraud – photographing every voter.
“A close-up photo of every voter along with a photo of the document he uses in order to be allowed to vote should be taken before casting a ballot,” the commission announced after a meeting on Tuesday.
Photographs will be sent to the election commission and saved.
The possibility of voter fraud in the September 30 vote for the regional parliament is a concern of several parties.
The CDJ leadership withdrew their party from the race entirely, citing doubts over the accuracy of the voter list. Some CDJ candidates have continued to campaign, defying their party leaders.
The election commission said it cleaned up the voter list, based on food ration forms from the Iraqi Ministry of Commerce, purging thousands of duplicate and ghost names.
They also decided voting and counting of ballots will be done manually, not using the electronic system that was deemed problematic in Iraq’s May election.
The Iraqi parliament ordered a manual recount of votes in some provinces after allegations of fraud from the electronic voting and counting systems that were used in the country for the first time.