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01/12/2006

NI electoral register published

The names of the 1,075,116 people who have secured their entitlement to vote in Northern Ireland, have today been published in the latest electoral register.

The register, the result of over three months work during what was the final annual canvass, reveals a fall in the number of eligible voters.

The number of people on the new register is almost 82,000, 7%, lower than the register published on December 1 2005, however, the 2005 register contained more than 95,000 individuals who had not returned a form but whose registration was “carried forward” from the previous register.

Comparing the December 2006 register with register from the same time the previous year, the largest fall in the numbers of individuals registered was in the West Belfast constituency, which was down by 15.4%.

The lowest fall was in Upper Bann, which was down by 4.8%.

Under the new arrangements, the register will be updated on a continuous basis.

Anyone who missed last month’s registration deadline has until January 11 to return a registration form to enable them to vote in the March election.

Douglas Bain, the Chief Electoral Officer for Northern Ireland, said: “I would like to thank everyone who returned their registration form and helped us complete this enormous task on time. Today in Northern Ireland we have, by far, the most accurate and comprehensive register of electors anywhere in the United Kingdom.”

The Electoral Register published today contains the names and addresses of 1,075,116 individuals who completed and returned registration forms during the annual canvass.

The oldest person on the register is 107 and comes from County Antrim and a number of 17-year-olds have registered, but they cannot vote until they become 18.

(EF)

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