Tuesday is the deadline for Poles abroad to register on electoral lists. The head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Zbigniew Rau, estimated at the conference that over 600,000 people could vote abroad. – The scale of the undertaking is truly unprecedented – he admitted. The minister was asked whether he was sure that all the votes of the Polish community would be counted.
Zbigniew Rau During Tuesday’s conference at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he talked about elections abroad. He mentioned that eight years ago, less than two hundred thousand Poles took part in voting abroad. – Four years ago it was three hundred and fourteen thousand. This year, at this moment, it is five hundred and sixty-some thousand, he said.
– Since today is the last day when Polish citizens abroad can register on electoral rolls, and the tendency to radically increase this number is more than obvious, I can assure you that by 24 hours today local time, let’s take into account (taking into account those in other zones time – ed.) the western states of the United States, California, Alaska, there will be over six hundred thousand of them – he said.
Comparing these numbers to the parliamentary elections from eight years ago, he emphasized that “three times as many Polish citizens will participate in parliamentary elections abroad and in the referendum,” and twice as many members of district electoral commissions will work in the elections. He added that almost 70 percent more district electoral commissions were created for this purpose and 60 new commission locations were created.
MFA: the scale of the project is truly unprecedented
Zbigniew Rau, speaking about preparations for holding elections abroad, said that in September the ministry “prepared” several dozen MFA employees who were then sent to those missions abroad which, according to the ministry’s estimates, will need professional support during the elections.
He pointed out that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs constantly cooperates with the National Electoral Commission in preparations for the elections (NEC) and the National Electoral Office (KBW), as well as with the head of the Ministry of Digital Affairs.
Rau also recalled that, among others, in some South American countries, in the United States and Canada, the election day will not be Sunday, but Saturday, so that voting can be closed according to Polish time on Sunday. So that Poles “do not wait for the act of voting of our compatriots across the Atlantic.”
The minister said that “the scale of the project is truly unprecedented.” – Currently, most of our compatriots who are ready to vote live in Great Britain – he said. He mentioned that “eight years ago, 40 voting districts were created there, and today there are 77 of them.” – We have assumed that wherever there are Polish citizens ready to take part in both parliamentary elections and referendums, we will create such conditions for them, regardless of the costs – he assured.
Zbigniew Rau was asked by journalists whether he was confident that all votes would be counted. “I am, absolutely,” he said in response.
Main photo source: PAP/Paweł Supernak