Electoral (Amendment) Act 2009

PART 5

European Parliament Elections

10.

Substitution of sections 12 and 13 of European Parliament Elections Act 1997.

10.— The European Parliament Elections Act 1997 is amended by substituting the following sections for sections 12 and 13:

“Nomination of candidates and replacement candidates.

12.— (1) At a European election a person may nominate himself or herself as a candidate or may, with his or her consent, be nominated by another person (being a person registered as a European elector in the constituency for which the person proposes to nominate the candidate) as proposer.

(2) In the case of a candidate whose candidature is not authenticated by a certificate of political affiliation under rule 5(3) of the Second Schedule, one or other of the following paragraphs shall, before the expiration of the time appointed by this Act for receiving nominations, be complied with:

( a) the candidate’s nomination shall have been assented to by 60 persons (excluding the candidate and any proposer) who are registered as European electors in the constituency (each of whom in this Act is referred to as an ‘assentor’);

( b) the candidate, or someone on his or her behalf, shall have made a deposit in accordance with section 13.

(3) The following provisions apply in respect of the assents required by subsection (2)( a) to the nomination of a candidate referred to in that subsection:

( a) to assent to the nomination, an assentor shall make a statutory declaration in the prescribed form stating the following:

(i) his or her number (including polling district letters) on the register of European electors in force on the date of the making of the statutory declaration;

(ii) his or her place of ordinary residence in respect of which he or she is registered in the register of European electors referred to in subparagraph (i);

(iii) his or her contact details, including telephone numbers (if any);

(iv) the name of the European Parliament constituency, on the date of the making of the statutory declaration, in which he or she is ordinarily resident;

(v) the name and address of the candidate;

(vi) the form of identification produced by him or her in accordance with paragraph ( b), including any number on it that distinguishes it from similar forms held by others;

(vii) that he or she assents to the nomination of the candidate;

(viii) that he or she has not assented to the nomination of any other candidate in respect of that European election;

( b) when making the statutory declaration referred to in paragraph ( a), the assentor shall produce to the person taking and receiving the declaration a prescribed photographic identification and shall, on so doing, be deemed, for the purposes of the Statutory Declarations Act 1938, to be personally known to the person taking and receiving the declaration;

( c) the assent shall have effect as respects, and only as respects, the European Parliament constituency in which the place referred to in paragraph ( a)(ii) is situate at the time of the European election concerned;

( d) subject to paragraph ( e), the assent shall have effect as respects, and only as respects, the European election in the constituency referred to in paragraph ( c) held next after the making of the statutory declaration;

( e) notwithstanding paragraph ( d), the assent shall cease to have effect if the register of European electors referred to in paragraph ( a) ceases to be in force before the holding of the European election referred to in paragraph ( d);

( f) the candidate or proposer shall attach the required number of statutory declarations (that is to say, the 60 statutory declarations constituting the assents) to the nomination paper and the nomination paper delivered to the returning officer in accordance with rule 11 of the Second Schedule shall have the declarations so attached;

( g) where more than the required number of statutory declarations is attached to the nomination paper, the declarations (up to the required number) first attached to the nomination paper shall be taken into account to the exclusion of any others;

( h) it shall be lawful for a member of the Garda Síochána or an official of the registration authority to take and receive a statutory declaration referred to in paragraph ( a) and any such declaration shall be stamped by the member or official concerned;

( i) a registration authority and a returning officer shall arrange for the provision of forms for the purposes of making a statutory declaration referred to in paragraph ( a) free of charge to any person who requests such a form.

(4) For the purposes of subsections (2)( a) and (3), a person whose application to have his or her name entered in a supplement to the register of European electors is approved by the registration authority at or before the latest time for delivery of a nomination paper to the returning officer shall be deemed to be registered as a European elector in the applicable constituency.

(5) At a European election—

( a) a registered political party, and

( b) a person who in relation to the election is a non-party candidate,

may, subject to and in accordance with rules 17, 18 and 19 of the Second Schedule, nominate one or more persons, with the consent of the person or persons concerned, to be as regards the election replacement candidates.

(6) Subject to rule 17( b) of the Second Schedule, a person who is a candidate at a European election shall be eligible for nomination as a replacement candidate.

(7) At a European election a person may not be nominated as a candidate or as a replacement candidate in respect of more than one constituency.

Deposit by certain candidates.

13.— (1) This section applies to a candidate referred to in section 12(2) unless the candidate concerned has opted to have his or her nomination assented to by the means specified in section 12(2)( a) and (3).

(2) A candidate at a European election referred to in section 12(2), or someone on his or her behalf, may, before the expiration of the time appointed by this Act for receiving nominations, deposit with the returning officer the sum of €1,800, and if he or she fails to do so, his or her candidature shall be deemed to have been withdrawn.

(3) The deposit that may be made by or on behalf of a candidate pursuant to this section may be made by means of legal tender or, with the consent of the returning officer, in any other manner.

Return or disposal of deposit.

13A.— (1) The deposit referred to in section 13 shall be returned where the candidate—

( a) withdraws his or her candidature in accordance with rule 15 of the Second Schedule,

( b) dies before the poll is closed,

( c) has not, before the expiration of the time for the receipt of nominations, been validly nominated as a candidate,

( d) is elected, or

( e) is not elected but the greatest number of votes credited to him or her at any stage of the counting of the votes at the European election exceeds one quarter of the quota.

(2) Any deposit which is not returned under the foregoing subsection shall be forfeited.

(3) Where a deposit is to be returned under subsection (1) it shall be returned to the person by whom it was made, provided that a deposit made by a person who dies before the deposit is returned shall be returned to the personal representative of that person.

(4) A deposit forfeited under this section shall be disposed of by the returning officer in such manner as may be directed by the Minister for Finance.

(5) In this section ‘personal representative’ has the meaning assigned to it by section 3 of the Succession Act 1965.”.