Thursday 18 April is the deadline to return registration forms and applications to vote by post for anyone who wants to vote in next month’s local government elections.
To vote on Thursday 3 May an individual must be registered and aged over 18 on polling day. They must also be a citizen of the UK, Ireland, the EU or qualifying Commonwealth citizens.
George Black, Glasgow City Council’s Chief Executive and Returning Officer said: ‘Make sure you are registered to vote, especially if you have changed your name or moved house this year. And if you want to vote by post or proxy, rather than go to the polling station, then there is still time to arrange that too.’
Residents can print off relevant forms from www.glasgow.gov.uk/elections, or phone 0141 287 4444. ’We don’t want anyone to miss their chance to have a say in how Glasgow is run,’ said Mr Black. ‘But they need to act now.’
Pupils at Bellahouston Academy are having their own election today. Working closely with Glasgow City Council’s Returning Officer, George Black, the actual process of voting has been studied and put into effect as it would be in real life.
From 7am this morning people have been striking off names on the electorial list which was compiled by S3 students who led on the election exercise. ‘This is fun,’ said Marc Hillhouse (14) as he drew a line threw each elector’s name when the person came to vote. ‘I didn’t know how to cast a vote before and it is good to be a part of the process.’
Turning up to get his voting paper was Ashar Mirza (17). He was one of almost half of the 600 eligible to ‘vote’ who had made their mark by 11.30am. ‘I’ve been reading the papers to give me an idea of who to vote for,’ said Ashar whose concern was university funding as he aims to go to university.
The result will be, according to commentator Saira Naheem who at 18 has a vote of her own: ‘Nicola Sturgeon will get the constituency seat because she is better known, being the sitting MSP. Labour may get in on the party list vote and it will be a close run thing with AV maybe winning that Westminster vote.’
Said George Black, Glasgow’s Returning Officer who will be on duty tonight at the count, where the Bellahouston Academy ballot boxes will also be counted: ‘It’s crucial that we enrich every young person with as rounded an education as possible and this includes learning about the important issue of democracy and elections.’
Added Bellahouston teacher, Murdo Macdonald, who orchestrated the election exercise: ‘I’m surprised how busy this has been. There was a real rush at the interval. That means pupils have been wanting to vote in their own time. No one is directing them to vote – just like real life!’
People wanting to vote by post in this General Election, must have their application in the Electoral Registration Office by 5pm on Tuesday 20 April. Postal ballot papers may be returned by post or handed into the Returning Officer or they can be handed into a polling station in the relevent constituency.
Where a voter needs to authorise someone else to make their vote for them – a proxy vote – this can be registered at the Electoral Reigistration Office up until 5pm on Tuesday 27 April. In cases of a voter becoming incapacitated after 27 April it may be possible to accept an application to vote by proxy up until 5pm on the date of the poll.
The Electoral Registration Officer can be contacted at 78 Queen Street, Glasgow G2 3DR. The phone is 0141 287 -7535 and the office is open to help prospective voters from 8.45 am till 4.45pm but closes at 3.55pm on a Friday.