UPA (Utanian Press Agency)
Release: March 16, 301 AP.

UEC analysis of census reveals a "disaster"

The disasterous electoral set-up in Utania continues to dominate headlines today, with the announcement from the Utanian Electoral Commission (UEC) that Lasanne state may have be over-represented at the federal level due to "massive errors" in the calculation of MP numbers.

Furthermore, further figures reporting the mismatch between population estimates upon which electorates were drawn, and current population census results, continue to show-up massive inequalities, prompting the UEC Director to state that he saw "no other way out" than to redraw the electoral boundaries. Under the new population figures, Utania would have 156 MPs, sixteen more than now.

With such massive discrepencies showing, MPs representing electorates that will lose several representatives are suddenly feeling severely undermined. "I was once representing an estimated 266,000 Utanians", says Cameron Olds, MP for the outer-suburban Banyasar electorate in the capital Utan Krysaror, "Whereas now I apparently represent less than 120,000 people. I should not be in Parliament, by all rights, and my moral authority is consequently severely undermined that it would almost be better that I resign."

"This cannot continue for another two years", claim many MPs. Twenty-two months would be the minimum remaining time left in the life of this Parliament according to the constitution, unless the Parliament votes to overrule it and hold immediate elections, a constitutional right they lose after the forthcoming Presidential election next January.

Yet many say it has to. "Will we overthrow the Parliament, cause greater turmoil in Utanian economic stability simply because our predecessors 'got it wrong'?" asks Gordon Kennett MP (Con;Gyum) of Gyum'th, an electorate that will lose two MPs, neither of which are likely to be him. "Yes, we are not completely representing the people properly, but the popular will _will_ triumph", he says.

The Democrats and Utani parties disagree. "The people are misrepresented, and we must immediately rectify this", said one Democrat MP, a member of the "True Democracy" faction that believes that Lendosa-style democratic reforms should be implemented.

Ultimately, the decision rests between the Parliament and the Utanian Electoral Commission (UEC), whose chief, Walter Dale, is cringing at the revelations. Further to his woes is the revelation that the population of Lasanne was specified as 13.6 million, but according to UEC figures used to calculate the number of MPs the state received it is 14.6 million. The error presents the state with three too many MPs.

Walter Dale was at the pinnacle of his career successfully implementing the inaugural Utanian elections, but is now looking tainted by this latest revelation. Dale, an Utanian from Shecker, had previously served with UNVCOCN.

©UPA, 301 AP.

©Mike Ham, 2001. All rights reserved. No reproduction without, at least, tacit approval. ;-)