2018 election: Men voters outnumber women

Voters queue up at the Draiba Primary School polling station in Suva during 2014 General Election. Picture: FILE/ATU RASEA

WHILE gender has begun to matter in many countries with regards to voter preferences, in the Pacific, including Fiji, it has been apparent that women do not always vote for women candidates.

University of the South Pacific academic in Governance and Developmental Studies Professor Vijay Naidu said whether they did this time around was yet to be seen.

He made the comments as the country prepares for the 2018 General Election on November 14.

Prof Naidu said from the January figures of registered voters, there were 313,453 males and 303, 137 female voters.

“Men outnumbered women by around 10,000 voters,” he said.

“Another group of people who’ll be an influential minority with respect to gender is the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex (LGBTQI) category.”

Fiji’s voters, he said, came from different classes depending on their ownership or non-ownership of big and small business, and whether they were professional white-collar workers, blue-collar workers, farmers or self-employed and casually employed persons.

And for these social classes, Prof Naidu said their income levels and the protection and promotion of their economic interests would matter.

“In this regard the country’s taxation policies including VAT and minimum wage policy will be of concern,” he said.

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