A scrutineer is calling for an investigation to look into what he’s calling voter fraud at a nomination race in a northeast Calgary riding.
According to Inderpreet Singh Gill, an area resident and volunteer scrutineer with Roop Rai’s campaign, members of the Alberta NDP’s Calgary-Northeast riding “witnessed electoral fraud on a mass scale with fraudulent voting (as outlined in Section 167 of Province of Alberta Election Act) through identity theft/misinterpretation.”
In a letter sent to the election commissioner of Alberta, Gill outlines several instances of fraud he says he observed at the Dec. 16, 2018 nomination meeting that saw Gurbachan Brar beat out Rai to win the NDP nomination.
Gill said people who don’t live in the riding were signed up as members by falsifying their addresses. He alleged they then voted in the meeting when they weren’t qualified. He also said that party office-bearers didn’t verify addresses before accepting memberships, and that the nomination chair accepted fraudulent IDs as real ones.
Gill writes that the concerns were brought to the attention of the nomination chair, Sandra Houston, who “overruled the objections and allowed the electoral fraud to happen despite being repeatedly informed of the occurrence of said fraud.”
“I am living in this riding, and it should be my choice whom I elect, not somebody from another riding who is able to manufacture an address, come to my riding and influence my will,” Gill told Global News on Friday.
“You are hijacking my election, I’m not going to anybody else’s .”
The letter also states that before the nomination meeting, an email was sent to Alberta NDP provincial secretary Roari Richardson, which claimed 15 people listed as members in a list sent by Richardson two days before the meeting were registered as all living in the same house. Gill said he spoke to the homeowner who said all 15 people do not live there.
“They had multiple names under one address, different surnames,” Gill said. “There were 14 or 15 guys using one address, there were eight or nine guys at another address, which, when we were doorknocking, they seemed at a loss of who they were and where to find them.”
He went on to say at least two of those members voted in the nomination meeting, and that his email was ignored.
“We want the party to investigate this nomination, in a fair, independent manner,” he said.
“If they think it’s sour grapes, so be it, but we want the principles laid down and more stringent action be taken.”
In an emailed statement, Richardson said the NDP “followed scrupulous identification requirements that are in line with the standards set out by Elections Alberta.”
“Elections Alberta states members voting can provide one piece of government-issued ID containing their photograph, their name and current address (such as a driver’s licence or Alberta identification card). Or, if unable to provide government-issued ID, they must provide two pieces of authorized ID,” Richardson said. “Both must have their name and one must have their current physical address.”
The Office of the Election Commissioner said in an emailed statement that it “does not disclose details in relation to complaints we have received or investigations that may, or may not be, ongoing.”
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