Central Otago Mirror - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE -

Ev­ery reg­is­tered voter has a re­spon­si­bil­ity to vote in this year’s lo­cal body elec­tions.

Like the rest of the coun­try, turn out in this re­gion dur­ing the 2013 elec­tions was poor. In Cen­tral Otago it was about 50 per cent. In the Queen­stown Lakes Dis­trict it slipped to less then 45 per cent.

The prob­lem is that later this year or next year or the year after the same peo­ple who haven’t voted will be the ones tak­ing to so­cial me­dia or com­plain­ing to their lo­cal news out­lets about the de­ci­sions made on their be­half.

New Zealand is still a democ­racy and the most ef­fec­tive tool each in­di­vid­ual has is his or her vote.

Do­ing some re­search and learn­ing what the can­di­dates stand for and the ex­pe­ri­ence they will bring to the coun­cil ta­ble is es­sen­tial to mak­ing an in­formed de­ci­sion about who you want to rep­re­sent you.

Yes, rep­re­sen­ta­tives may later make a de­ci­sion you don’t like but if you don’t vote in the first place - you have no right to com­plain.

Deb­bie Jamieson

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