Caruana thinking of early election

The chief minister Peter Caruana appears to be thinking of holding an early election. How else can it be explained that he has decided to update the election register?
The Official Notices that have appeared in the press say that the election register for 2003 will be used for the referendum, which is an incredible thing to say.
An election register and a referendum register are two different things. A referendum register, as used in the 1967 and 2002 referendums, stem from the fundamental requirement of ensuring that the indigenous population, the colonial population, determine the outcome of a referendum.
An election register, on the other hand, is open to other British people, even those who have been resident for just 6 months and cannot be described as 'belongers' of the place at that point. They are not entitled to determine the future of Gibraltar by any international law.
Mr Caruana must have known the difference between the two. Either he made a mistake in selecting an election register for a referendum, or under the guise of the referendum, he is updating the election register for an early election!
DECISION TAKEN
He cannot say now that a decision has not been taken on who will vote in the referendum. The decision is the Official Notice that has been published which spells out who can vote!
The Official Notice is headed 'Referendum on the new Constitution' and it says in the clearest of terms that 'this register will be based on the 2003 register of electors and will be updated.'
And it asks people to check if they are on the list as entitled to vote. Hence, if a British national who has been in Gibraltar for a short period of time, and is not a Gibraltarian or belonger, finds himself in the register of electors for the referendum, will be able to claim entitlement to vote. He or she can argue, quite rightly, that their name cannot suddenly be erased, if the Government were to decide on a different yardstick AFTER the Official notice has been published.
The chaotic situation that is developing could have been easily avoided if, instead of updating the 2003 election register, it had been decided to update the 2002 REFERENDUM register. That would have been the proper way of going about it.
Now, all kinds of speculation are surfacing as a result of mixing up an election register in a referendum.
UNDER-18 CAN VOTE!
And there is another potential new mess-up which PANORAMA has noted. This is that to be entitled to vote in the referendum, he Notice says, a person must be aged 18 or over "or will reach the age of 18 before 31st December 2006."
This means that, since the referendum is to be held before the end of the year, persons who are not 18 when the referendum takes place will be entitled to vote. That is, persons who are under 18 can vote!





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