The Electoral Commission has noted the concerns expressed by various stakeholders over the Commission’s restriction on use of cameras and other recording devices inside polling stations on polling day.
The EC has today given guidance on use of cameras and other recording devices inside polling stations.
According to EC, the nature of the polling booth, which is an open basin, the presence of cameras in side polling stations may jeopardise the secrecy of the ballot, due to uncontrolled use of cameras and other recording devices.
While phones are not prohibited at polling stations, they must not be used for recording purposes or taking photographs inside the polling stations (the cordoned-off area).
It adds that a voter must not display his/her choice of a candidate on polling day by taking a photograph, including a selfie, or recording a video of his/her marked ballot paper.
However, EC says that voters will be allowed to use their phones or cameras during the vote counting.
“The counting of votes cast at each polling station will be conducted openly, and a voter or candidate’s agent may take photographs or recordings of the counting process and/or take a photograph or record the issued Declaration of Results Form,” says EC
“Media personnel, who have been accredited to cover the elections, will be permitted to access polling stations and may take photographs of the voting process, but outside the cordoned-off area in a manner that protects the privacy of voters and the secrecy of the ballot,” It adds.