Timor-Leste parliamentary vote this weekend

TIMOR-LESTE goes to the polls this Saturday for its fourth parliamentary election held since the country restored independence from Indonesia in 2002.
Timor-Leste parliamentary vote this weekend Timor-Leste parliamentary vote this weekend Timor-Leste parliamentary vote this weekend Timor-Leste parliamentary vote this weekend Timor-Leste parliamentary vote this weekend

Rui Maria de Araújo

Staff Reporter

The website democracyspeaks.org said that the election would be an important indicator of voter sentiment towards the incumbent government, led by the National Congress for Timorese Reconstruction (CNRT) and the Revolutionary Front for an Independent East Timor (FRETLIN), which established a national unity government in 2015.
Rui Maria de Araújo is the current Prime Minister of Timor-Leste, a position he has held since 2015.
Research group International Republican Institute's most recent public opinion survey, released in November 2016, showed that voters generally believe their country is going in the right direction and approve of the government's performance.
Additionally, the IRI survey indicated that voters are looking to their political leaders for solutions to important public policy issues facing the country, such as roads, employment, and education. 
Another major issue that will be key during the campaign season will be the economy. An estimated 70% of the current state budget is derived from energy-based income and all eyes are on the pending development of the Greater Sunrise gas field, which is in the Timor Sea and would guarantee the country additional oil and gas revenue.
Candidates will need to give constituents answers to their pressing policy questions and present issue-based platforms. 
But there are concerns about electoral violence in the upcoming Timor-Leste election as 66% of respondents to the November 2016 survey stated that they were "very concerned" that violence may take place in their district during the election.
"To help ensure the integrity and transparency of the electoral process, IRI is fielding an international election observation mission that will deploy observers to all 13 of the country's districts," IRIglobal said.
"Our election monitoring will not only include election day observation but also long-term observers.  Long-term observation will examine pre-election campaigning, media coverage, electoral administration and the post-election period to gain a holistic perspective of the entire electoral process."



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