Pacific Islands Development Program/East-West Center
With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies/University of Hawai‘i

About 300 eligible for absentee vote

By Philip N. Haruo
KOROR (Palau Horizon, August 24, 2009) - Japanese residing in Palau began casting their votes on Wednesday to elect new government leaders of Japan.

According to Kioko Emesiochl of the Embassy of Japan, Japan will hold its General Election on August 30 to elect its government leadership. She said that Japanese citizens residing outside of Japan are accorded opportunities to vote for leaders of choice through absentee ballots.

Emesiochl said that there are 300 Japanese who have established residency in Palau. Moreover, they began to cast their votes on Wednesday, August 19.

"Of the 300 Japanese residing in Palau," she said, "we are expecting about no more than 70 of them to vote."

According to Emesiochl, not all of the Japanese residents have registered to vote in Japan. Furthermore, only the residents with valid voting registration cards will be allowed to cast their votes.

Emesiochl further added that the Japan Embassy in Ngerkebesang, Koror is the polling place for Japanese residents to cast their votes.

"Japanese residing in Palau began casting their votes last Wednesday," she said. "Our office will continue to officiate the election until Saturday, August 22. Any Japanese residing in Palau who has not voted yet, can cast his vote at our office from 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m."

Emesiochl said that once the time to vote has elapsed, all the ballots will be hand carried to Guam by a staff of the Embassy where it would then be forwarded to Japan for counting right after the General Election in Japan, "I urge every Japanese residing in Palau with a valid registration card to come to the Embassy and vote," she said.

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