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Cyprus

Campaign to tempt young voters

The interior ministry is making a last attempt to get apathetic young people to vote in May’s parliamentary election by advertising and handing out information, Interior Minister Socrates Hasikos said on Tuesday.

Only 25 per cent of voters who have become eligible to vote since the last elections have registered to do so in the upcoming parliamentary elections have done so. A total of 32,000 are eligible, and 24,000 of those are so far not planning to vote, Hasikos said.

The closing date for registration on the electoral roll is April 2. The interior, defence and education ministers are trying a last effort to get young people to register to vote.

“The decisions taken,” Hasikos said, “concern creating advertising spots, which will be shown in all mass media, but also other ways such as the preparation of material which will be distributed both in army camps and in universities so that young people including soldiers and students register to vote and have the right, the most important right of a citizen in a democracy, that of voting.

“Unfortunately as the years go by the interest of young people is waning. The climax is this time. Whereas previously they were limited to less than 10 per cent, today it seems that the proportion of those not enrolled is much higher,” the minister added.

He said non-registration of the new voters is not unrelated to a broader depreciation of politics and politicians.

“It is a mistake, because if someone is of the view that neither politics nor politicians are worth it, this is the opportunity to testify, to express it in the most formal way through the process of elections. Some will exist that will excite them or they can believe in so why lose the opportunity to vote for those who in their opinion are worthy and able?” the minister concluded.

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