Democracy is based on the right of citizens to participate in the decision making process, thus establishing the rules by which they agree to live together. Those fundamental rights can only be exercised when citizens engage as actively as possible in public life. The voting process is an essential manifestation of that engagement. True democracy however, is not only dependent on the involvement of the citizens but to the extent to which they participate in the electoral process. The electorate therefore, is the principal target of the electoral organization. However, there has been a significant decline in voter turn out in the past decade in particular among the youngest group of eligible voters. This trend could, however, worsen if steps are not taken to reverse it.
Over the last five years, some strides have been made to increase participation. Some decentralization initiatives in the registration service have been pursued. Other approaches in the provision of civil education particularly during the election period have had some positive impact though very little. From time to time, the department has employed new strategies in order to generate an increased awareness of the electoral process by the citizenry. The establishment of this electoral website is yet another initiative in fulfillment of that effort.
This approach is indeed a step in the right direction as it represents a commitment to employing technological innovations which will enhance our efficiency and effectiveness in the discharge of our mandate.
We are of the firm view that this medium will prove to be a valuable and accessible resource, which will no doubt redound to the generation of the desired awareness.
The site offers a wide range of valuable information, some of which include:-
The Electoral Commission (composition, method of appointment, functions etc)
The Electoral Department (sections and assigned responsibilities)
The Electoral Administration process (history of elections in Saint Lucia, results of past elections, etc.)
Accordingly, I extend a personal invitation to you to visit our website. We will be constantly updating information on the site as reforms take place and new initiatives introduced towards the enhancement of the electoral system. We welcome your questions and comments.
Gasper Jn. Baptiste
Chief Elections Officer