Integrity and security of count

 

Sir, – I write concerning the article published in your edition of May 21st under the heading “Councillors voice concern over vote counting system”. I was surprised that such an article would be written without my knowledge or affording a right to reply on my part.

Your headline is misleading and there is clearly no concern over the “vote counting system” which will take place by way of a single transferable vote in a proportional representation system.

My position is set out in a reply to Cllr Anthony Lavin’s email of March 14th of the same date. In it, I set out clearly the position adopted in respect of the European and local elections in Dublin.

It is absolutely clear that any public representative or person effected is entitled to make a comment but your article is partisan and one-sided and suggests (alarmingly) that the integrity and security of the count have in some way been compromised. This is clearly not so and there is no basis for that assertion. Notwithstanding this, you have allowed those quoted to make the following inaccurate and ill-founded remarks:

a) that ballot papers would be “shunted around like shuttlecocks”;

b) that the European Parliament votes were “taking precedence” over local votes;

c) that the proposed transportation introduced a “vulnerability in the electoral system where extra votes can be put in. This is wrong on a basically democratic level. They have made an arse of it”;

d) “It beggars belief as to what they are doing”.

You give voice to certain individuals without reference to me. The system is as I have set out and referred to in my letter and I do not wish to reiterate that. This is not the creation of a “very dangerous precedent”. There were no such complaints made in 2014 when the segregation and verification and count for the three county councils also took place in Citywest. – Yours, etc,

FERGUS GALLAGHER,

European Parliament

Returning Officer for the

Constituency of Dublin,

Dublin 11.