Re an Application by Debbie Ngarewa-Packer for a Recount of Electoral Votes in the Te Tai Hauauru District [2020] NZDC 23709

Published 19 November 2020

Application for vote recount — judicial recount — General Election 2020 — Māori electorate — informal votes — official declaration — Electoral Act 1993, subs 180(5)(a) & (10). This was an application by the Māori Party candidate in the Te Tai Hauāuru Māori electorate for a judicial recount of the official election result for that electorate. The recount was conducted in accordance with s 180(5)(a) of the Electoral Act ("the Act"). The recount was conducted by counting staff in the presence of the Judge and the Returning Officer and staff, scrutineers appointed by the Māori Party and Labour Party candidates, the Chief Electoral Officer and staff of the Electoral Commission. Where confirmation was required about the status of an informal vote, this was determined by the Judge in front of the scrutineers. The recount resulted in minor variations in numbers, but no overall difference to the outcome. These variations were attributed to transcription or clerical errors. Accordingly, the Judge made an order pursuant to s 180(10) of the Act giving an amended declaration of the result of the poll. The Judge noted the professionalism and skill exercised by the counters and the Electoral Commission staff and scrutineers. Judgment Date: 17 November 2020.