Low voter turnout in police commissioner elections


Rachel Roberts

DISAPPOINTING voter turnout figures have been revealed as the count gets under way to determine who will be North Wales' next Police and Crime Commissioner.
The total votes cast from a possible 524,252 electorate across North Wales came to 79,906, meaning a turnout average of 15.2%.  
Just 13.3% of the electorate voted in Flintshire, with only Wrexham showing an even lower interest in the election with a 12.2% turnout.
Conwy came in at 16%, Denbighshire votes totalled 16.7%, Gwynedd voters made up 17.7%, with Anglesey having the strongest figure at 17.8% of the votes.
Voter apathy has been a concern for the election since its inception, and today's figures seem to confirm it.
Jenny Watson, Chair of the Electoral Commission, said: "The low turnout at the Police and Crime Commissioner elections is a cincern for everyone who cares about democracy.
"These were new elections taking place at an unfamiliar time of year, which is why we have made clear at every stage that it would be important to engage effectively with voters.
"The Government took a number of decisions about how to run these elections that we did not agree with. But what is important now is that the right lessons are learnt; we will talk to voters, candidates and Returning Officers to understand and what didn't.
"The Commission is going to undertake a thorough review, and we will rpesent out findings to Parliament in early 2013."


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