The Office of the Electoral Commissioner is gearing up for the by elections scheduled on 26 November, 2021

Electoral Commissioner Faimalomatumua Matthew Lemisio said of the seven vacant seats, three of those constituencies are allowed to register new voters while the four remaining, that was unseated as a result of court ruling are not allowed to register new voters in line with the electoral law, the Savali reports.

The constituencies where voters can register are Safata 2, Sagaga 4 and Falealupo.

He told Savali news the registrations for candidates will start on the 1st of November and will close on 5th November.

Last month the FAST Administration approved amendments required to address certain issues arising from recent Court decisions regarding eligibility for candidacy and to provide clarity for the administration required for elections and By-elections.

The new amendments saw the return of voters to voting booths to cater for rural and Savai'i voters, which was a contentious issue for voters who are registered in Savai'i as they had to travel to the big island in order to cast their ballot.

Another amendment made is that religious activities will also be included as part of the monotaga.

The Commission is obligated to appoint a third category of persons who may be a statutory declaration confirming the monotaga requirements of a candidate.

It was also amended so that the registration of a matai title of a person intending to be a candidate for an election does not need to be three consecutive years from lodgement day, provided that the matai title is registered before lodgement day.