Candidate fears potential for dementia voting 'rort'
A candidate for the Horowhenua District Council is calling for an investigation into voting at dementia units because there is "a very large potential to be rorting the system".
Bryan Ten Have said that it wouldn't be fair in the upcoming election if the posted voting papers could be filled out by someone else.
But the region's electoral officer Warwick Lampp disagrees.
"The dementia units know the drill and they make a decision as to whether each of their patients is capable of voting or not.
"If they're not [capable], my experience is those voting papers are destroyed."
It is unlawful to have someone with power of attorney vote on behalf of a person.
However, Mr Lampp said it was not possible to tell whether a facility or a person was filling out a patient's voting paper for them.
"How do you know that any postal vote going to a house is not being filled out by someone else?"
A Horowhenua dementia unit the Manawatu Standard contacted said unused voting papers were kept in patients' files because it was up to an enduring power of attorney - normally family - to decide if a person was fit to vote.
Mr Ten Have said the process potentially enabled facilities to choose a preferred candidate multiple times.
"Why are they not sending [the voting papers] back unopened?
- © Fairfax NZ News
Do you agree with increased oil exploration?