Ben-Eliezer: We will investigate claims of rigged voting

MK: "We will implement all available ways to check this"; Channel 2 report says that many people unaware they had been signed up for the party.

By GIL STERN STERN HOFFMAN, JPOST.COM STAFF
June 23, 2011 12:16
1 minute read.
INDUSTRY, TRADE and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben-El

Ben Eliezer 311. (photo credit: Assaf Shila/Israel Sun)

MK Binyamin Ben-Eliezer  referred to claims by Former Labor chairman  Amram Mitzna that the recent Labor membership drive was rigged, saying  "we will implement all available ways to check this, but it may be advisable to consider other voting methods", according to a report on Army Radio Thursday.

Ben-Eliezer's comments were made following criticisms by Mitzna that at least 25 percent of the membership drive was illegal.

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A fourth of some 60,000 membership forms received in Labor’s membership drive came from the Arab and Druse sectors, including many people who had no idea that someone signed them up for the party, Channel 2 reported on Tuesday night.

The report cited several Arab and Druse towns in which the number of new Labor members by far exceeded the number of Labor voters. For instance, in Hura, a Beduin village northeast of Beersheba, there are 136 Labor members but only six people who voted for the party.

MK Amir Peretz won the drive, signing up more than 20,000 members. The report said that Peretz’s hometown of Sderot had 1,000 new members, more than any city other than Tel Aviv.

Thousands of people who joined Labor in the drive are illegally members of two parties, and some are members of three.

Mitzna, who only signed up 8,000 members, criticized the drive, saying that at least 25 percent of it was illegal.

He blamed Peretz for most of the illegalities.

Labor secretary-general Hilik Bar said it was too soon to judge the drive, because more than half of the registration forms had yet to be examined.

He said that former judge Sara Frisch had been appointed to ensure that the drive was clean.

Bar expressed concern that credit card and bank account numbers had been leaked to one of the candidates and to the press. He said the matter would be investigated.


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