as a candidate.
UK there are rules about who can stand as a candidate but assuming your
candidate or yourself, if you are the candidate, meet the normal criteria,
live or work in the area, don’t have any outstanding criminal
convictions and aren’t a bankrupt you still need to register as
a candidate with the returning officer.
officer is usually a senior official of the local authority who has
overall authority for the electoral process in their area. If you contact
them and say you wish to be a candidate you can request a nomination
form which they will send you.
To be correctly
nominated you will need to have a proposer, a seconder and ten supporters
who will all need to sign your registration form. All of these people
have to be registered electors in the area for which the election is
being held. There is a place on the form for them to supply their polling
number to prove that they are registered electors although at this time
they will not have received their polling cards so this is where your
copy of the Electoral Role proves its worth again. If someone is adamant
that they want to sign your form but they are not registered to vote
do not let them as this will invalidate your form and your candidature.
For council elections they have to be electors in the ward in which
you intend to stand and for general elections they have to be registered
in the constituency for which you intend to stand. If you do not have
an organised party with a membership on which to draw you can ask family
members or neighbours as long as they are registered electors. These
are allowed and strangely being a signatory to a candidate’s nomination
is not an indication of support for that candidate’s campaign,
only for their right to stand as a candidate.
of getting 12 people to support you sounds straightforward, and mostly
it is. It can go wrong though with disastrous consequences for your
campaign. Here's an example of what NOT to do.
General Election was held on the same day as the district council
election of that year. One of the major parties had a candidate who
was both a Parliamentary and a Council candidate. With 10 days to
go before both elections two of electors listed as supporters on his
nomination papers for the Council election reported to the Returning
Officer that they had not signed the nomination papers. The matter
was then refered to the Police who launched an investigation into
possible electoral fraud. On hearing this, the party suspended the
membership of their candidate, despite the fact that it was now too
late for him to be removed as a candidate and replaced by someone
else. This means that in both elections this party were now lacking
an official and supported candidate. As I write the matter is ongoing
which is one reason I have mentioned no names.
have to deliver your nomination papers to the returning officer by a
pre-determined date usually 4 –5 weeks prior to the election day.
Registering the Candidate is usually carried out by the Agent; it is
one of their main roles. In law a candidate needs to have an agent although
you can been your own agent. The agent is legally liable for the conduct
of the campaign so it helps if they have been involved before and know
what to look out for. The agent should be organising all the activites
discussed in this guide.
Continue to Campaign....