The president of the Christian Student Fellowship, Chris Ntewo, is of the opinion that Commonwealth students should be allowed to vote if they meet necessary criteria.
Speaking with MiyVue.com recently, he said that opposition members cannot make the argument that they are going to be voting for the government, even before the elections is held.
“How do you know who we are going to vote for, is it the ruling party or is it the opposition party? They don’t know…” the president said.
He stated that some of the opposition members have been asking Nigerian students to vote for them during the elections.
“They don’t want us to exercise our rights. But as a Commonwealth citizen you have the right to exercise the freedom to vote, but the problem is, they want our vote, but they don’t want Nigerians to vote,” Chris Ntewo explained.
Meantime, chairman of the St. Kitts-Nevis Labour Party Marcella Liburd told MiyVue.com that her party is in favor of Nigerians exercising the right to vote during the elections, since they are part of the Commonwealth of Nations.
“They are Commonwealth citizens, and I don’t know why they are being targeted?” adding, “The constitution gives Commonwealth citizens the right to get registered and vote if they so desire… once they are resident here for 12 months,” Liburd stated.
Liburd explained that there is no ‘Act’ written, which outlines that students are not allowed to exercise that right.
“Nothing qualifying that you have to be here as a student or any other purpose. Once you are a resident here for 12 months and you are a Commonwealth citizen, you have a right to vote, if you so desire. I have known persons, who have come to St Kitts to do business contracts and are registered,” Liburd posite.
The outspoken constituency #2 incumbent representative said that it is the opinion of the SKNLP that they are legitimately registered. Those who are registered, they are legally registered, and they are doing what is right under the constitution.”
But opposition candidates have been pressing their case that the issue is not one of qualified Commonwealth citizens, rather the situation is that Immigration has listed the Nigerian students as ‘permitted entrance for study’. This matter is now before the court awaiting an interpretation.
Meanwhile, in the event that any student finds a difficulty in getting registered, Liburd said that such a person should make a complaint, but she has not heard of anyone making such a complaint about getting registered.