EBC conducts mock polling station simulation exercise
EBC staff and health officials in the simulation exercise of the mock polling station on June 7
Chief Election Officer Fern Narcis-Scope and staff of the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC) staged a mock polling station simulation exercise to assess its level of preparedness for the upcoming General Election, which will be conducted under COVID-19 guidelines.
According to a statement from the EBC on Wednesday, the simulation was an interactive exercise with the forty-one returning officers and included a team of officials from the Ministry of Health, led by the Principal Medical Officer Epidemiology (PMOE).
The Ministry of Health officials were also on site observing and participating in the simulation exercise.
The EBC said that at every step in the staged voting process, the Chief Election Officer identified for the benefit of the returning officers the new processes that will be introduced in the polling stations on Election Day.
Narcis-Scope engaged the returning officers in a Q&A session, supported by the PMOE, addressing concerns on potential risks and issues of non-compliance.
She also reminded all present that while there has been a general policy acceptance of the use of masks in Trinidad and Tobago, it is still not law.
The EBC said all suggestions and recommendations emanating from the exercise will be incorporated into a COVID-19 policy document being compiled by the Ministry of Health for the conduct of elections under COVID-19.
Narcis-Scope stated that the exercise was essential for a smooth process on poll day.
She said it was also necessary to have the exercise with the supporting role of the Ministry of Health for its guidance on the EBC’s plans to conduct a poll with physical distancing, masks, and sanitisation.
The Chief Election Officer added that the public will be informed of what will apply at polling stations through an intensive sensitisation campaign in the near future.
The mock polling station simulation exercise was held at the University of Trinidad and Tobago (NAPA Campus) on Tuesday.