January 20, 2010

BNP to put own seals on ballot boxes over fraud fears

The British National Party is so concerned about fraud at the general election that it intends to place its own seals on ballot boxes. The party fears its opponents will seek to sabotage its aim of winning a seat in Parliament for the first time.

So it has invoked the Ballot Act of 1872, which allows candidates to put their own seals on boxes, in an effort to avert tampering. Independent election officials always seal boxes when polls close.

BNP spokesman John Walker said his party would apply its own seals in the London seats of Barking - where leader Nick Griffin is running - and Dagenham and Rainham. The BNP hopes to do well against incumbent Labour MPs in both contests.

Under escort

The party will consider adding its own ballot box seals in other seats such as Burnley. Mr Walker claimed the decision by many councils to delay general election counts until the day after voting meant there would be greater opportunity for someone to tamper with boxes.

Normally they are taken under escort straight from polling stations to be counted on the evening of the vote.

Mr Walker claimed there had been suggestions in the past that boxes had been opened and BNP votes spoiled or removed, or other parties' votes added. He said: "We know it happens. We just cannot prove it. It is a shame we have to invoke these things. But some council staff are in the pocket of the local Labour party and we suspect they would use any means to tamper with votes."

'Perfectly lawful'

The Ballot Act of 1872 states that "the presiding officer of each station, as soon as is practicable after the close of poll, shall, in the presence of the agents of the candidates, make up (the ballot boxes) into separate packages sealed with his own seal and the seals of such agents of the candidates as desire to affix their seals".

The legislation also introduced the secret ballot for parliamentary elections to prevent voter intimidation by employers and landowners.

The right for candidates to add their own seals has survived repeated reforms of election law, currently regulated by the Representation of the People Act. Parties rarely use this right.

John Turner, chief executive of the Association of Electoral Administrators, said: "This is perfectly lawful in terms of the Representation of the People Act. But to the best of my knowledge and recollection, no other party does this."

A Labour spokesman said: "We are confident that when the general election comes the British people will clearly reject the disgusting politics of the BNP. That will be because their politics are vile and divisive not because of any bizarre paranoia about ballot boxes."



Anonymous said...

Jackie spills the beans about gay Nick.


Anonymous said...

Griffin was on BBC TV today, he will never be elected to Barking, he should contest Brighton instead and try and caught the Gay vote?


iliacus said...

This is actually good news - if they're wasting their time putting seals on boxes to avoid (non-existent) tampering, putting party activists in the polling station to prevent (non-existent) personation, etc etc they're not out campaigning!

TT said...

UNISON slams BNP ballot allegations

Commenting on the British National Party’s allegations over voting sabotage, and plans to put their own ballot seals on boxes, Dave Prentis, UNISON’s General Secretary, said:

“It is outrageous for the BNP to attack the morality and integrity of the Local Government workers, who handle the ballot boxes.

“It is a mark of a paranoid and desperate party.

“They need to face facts – they are not getting any votes because the British people are not swallowing their racist views.”

UNISON Press Release

Anonymous said...

I think the agents at the polling stations should take photos of all BNP supporters, just in case they try to come back and place a second vote.

Anonymous said...

Deal or No deal!!!

Anonymous said...

I am more concerned withg attempts by the Nutzies to interfere with the boxes whilst they are being sealed.

Use of wax in the past has caused fires i8n boxes, leading to legal costs and difficulties.

In safe non Nutzie wards the odd fire in ballot boxes will be expected.

Secondly I expect cries of "Our seals were tampered with !!" Its known as getting your excuses in first.

Any bets on this ????

Old Sailor

Anonymous said...

The BNP are paranoid. They believe all this 'protocols of Zion' nonsense about malevolent secretive cabals plotting to deny them their true place in government.

They overestimate their actual support (as the old NF always did).

Anonymous said...


It's a public invite - let's smash the fash!

Barbara said...

Iliacus - I doubt they will actually do this in reality. This is a publicity stunt.
Expect many more similar foolish and time-wasting self-promoting twaddle from the noisome BNP in the weeks ahead.
As if 'brand-recognition' is enough. hw insulting to the electorate!

ex-fascist said...

@ Barbara

You're absolutely right. It's all about creating an association in the public mind between the democratic parties and political malpractice.

If that were not the case, why bother announcing it?

Anonymous said...


This stunt won't affect the BNP's campaigning as they can only put the seals on after the polls have closed.

smithy said...

This paranoia is a further example of Nick Griffin's need for a full frontal lobotomy.

Anonymous said...

They have already done this in the past in Tameside, Greater Manchester. A work colleague was a Labour teller so I got the info first hand.

But why they are behaving as if this were new I don't know.