ELECTIONS 2022/Over 83% of Taiwan's population eligible to vote in November: election official

08/18/2022 04:05 PM
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Central Election Committee Chairperson Lee Chin-yung is pictured by the committee
Central Election Committee Chairperson Lee Chin-yung is pictured by the committee' announcements for the upcoming Nov. 26 elections after they were released in Taipei on Thursday. CNA photo Aug. 18, 2022

Taipei, Aug. 18 (CNA) Over 83 percent of Taiwan's 23 million people are eligible to cast ballots in the local elections in November, including 760,000 first-time voters, the Central Election Commission (CEC) said Thursday.

In the nine-in-one elections on Nov. 26, voters will be electing 11,023 public officials at all levels of local government, CEC Chairperson Lee Chin-yung (李進勇) said shortly after the CEC published a notice for candidate registration.

Registration will open Aug. 29 to Sept. 2 for candidates seeking to run for city mayor, county magistrate, city and county council member, township mayor and council member, and other local government positions down to the neighborhood level, the CEC notice said.

According to Lee, some 19.3 million people in Taiwan -- over 83 percent of the population -- are eligible to vote in the elections, as they are 20 years old and over, and 760,000 of them are first-time voters.

Alongside the local government elections, a national referendum will also be held, asking whether the voting age in Taiwan should be lowered to 18.

If the referendum passes, it will require an amendment to the Republic of China (Taiwan) Constitution to lower the voting age to 18, a process that will be conducted for the first time as a result of a referendum vote.

The threshold for passage of the referendum is a "yes" vote by at least 50 percent of the country's 19.3 million eligible voters, which is double the 25 percent approval required in referendums on non-constitutional issues.

In the legislative vote that sent the issue to a referendum on March 25, the 113-seat Legislature voted 109-0 in favor of the constitutional amendment.

The ROC Constitution has been amended seven times since it was ratified in 1947. The most recent change was enacted in 2004 to dissolve the National Assembly and pass on its power of constitutional amendments to the electorate.

For the Nov. 26 referendum and local government elections, the CEC will employ some 300,000 people to work at an estimated 17,648 polling stations nationwide, according to Lee.

(By Yeh Su-ping and Shih Hsiu-chuan)

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