LG: Numerous roadblocks occurring in the country are likely to further delay the upcoming local government (LG) elections.

The Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB) was expected to issue an election schedule for the second phase of local polls today or around this time. Many candidates are eagerly waiting for the ECB to release the election schedule, and had expected it would be issued today.

While the ECB had not specifically mentioned that poll dates would be announced today, the commission on June 4 issued a notification stating the polls were “postponed to a date after July 28”.

In an emailed response to Kuensel, the ECB yesterday stated it will call elections taking into account both legal requirements and the road conditions.

“The election schedule will take into account the legal requirements as well as the practical ground realities as the elections would indeed require a lot of travel by the electoral officials as well as the candidates,” it stated. The revised schedule, the ECB added, will be issued after July 28 as stated in the earlier notification.

Roads and bridges have been washed by flood water in various parts of the country. Gewog and farm roads have also been cutoff affecting the movement of people.

Zomdus or nomination of candidates will start after the announcement of the election dates.

A candidate said he was expecting the ECB to issue the election schedule today. “Election officials in my dzongkhag had told me that the election dates would be announced tomorrow,” he said yesterday, requesting anonymity.

He said he was disappointed with the weather conditions. “I am anxiously waiting for issuance of the election schedule. But I think the election will be further delayed,” he said.

Those wishing to contest the elections have been reminded to prepare the necessary documents once the nomination process starts.

The ECB has also released the draft electoral roll and postal voters list for the elections for public inspection and filing of claims and objections. They can be viewed in the respective dzongkhag electoral offices, the Thimphu head office and the ECB website.

The ECB has urged all eligible voters to verify and ensure they are included in the electoral roll and that the voters’ details correctly reflected.

The ECB has also declared the results of the Functional Literary and Possession of Skills Test or FLT that was held on July 19.

A total of 102 female and 365 male probable candidates sat for the test, out of which 96 female and 298 male passed the test.

MB Subba