Vanuatu tops Asia-Pacific region, ranks 4th globally in 2016 Happy Planet Index

Happy Planet Index 2016 Vanuatu data

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Mini-census to take stock of population movements since Cyclone Pam; GJP victorious in Malo/Aore by-election

The Mini-Census announcement ceremony yesterday. Photo: VNSO

The Mini-Census announcement ceremony yesterday. Photo: VNSO

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Happy International Happiness Day!

Photo: Graham Crumb/Imagicity.com

Photo: Graham Crumb/Imagicity.com

Today is International Happiness Day. Why are we pleasantly concerned? Remember when Vanuatu was top of the Happy Planet Index back in 2006, before long haul airports taking over grazing land at Teouma and crumbling airstrips at Bauerfield, million vatu bribery charges and the sacking of Parliament. That one just had to go and we are all glad because it has. And we’ve got a new one. AND it meets in proper debate tomorrow for the first time! Hooray!!! We are happy!!!!!

Your editor asked Jamie Tanguay from the Vanuatu National Statistics Office to tell us a bit more about happiness in Vanuatu today. He said: Read the rest of this entry »


Ghostbusters: it’s time to deal with Vanuatu’s phantom voters

By Anna Naupa and Nick Howlett

Part 1 of a 3-part series on Vanuatu’s Electoral Integrity

Read Part 2: ‘Is diversity of political representation possible in Vanuatu?’ >
Read Part 3: ‘Is dual citizenship a threat to Vanuatu? No, but unregulated political financing is’ >
 
When Vanuatu goes to the polls on 22 January, 2016, an estimated 2,000 ni-Vanuatu youth, and several hundred recently naturalized adult citizens, will be denied a vote due to the impossibly short deadline for voter registration. Not only is this a denial of the democratic right to vote, it highlights the inaccuracy of Vanuatu’s electoral roll.

In Vanuatu’s 2012 General Election, an estimated 55,000 dead people were included on the electoral roll as eligible voters, about 140% more voters than official census data says there should be. This article suggests a simple and cost-effective way of ensuring the integrity of Vanuatu’s electoral roll so these ‘phantom voters’ don’t come back to haunt us. Read the rest of this entry »