By Mark Nother
With increasing speculation of Friday February 26th as a date for the upcoming General Election many students may be wondering about their eligibility to vote. Unfortunately the deadline to register to vote has passed, but with the increase in registered voters following the referendum earlier this year this should not be the problem seen in previous General Election campaigns. You can also apply to be added to the supplementary register up to 15 days before the election day itself. You can check if you are on the register at www.checktheregister.ie.
Crucially for students who may happen to be living away from home whilst studying there is still time to register for the postal vote. Students are eligible to join the postal voters list if they are studying full-time at an educational institution in Ireland that is situated in a constituency other than the one to which you are registered to vote.
Although the deadline for joining the register is closed you may still apply to be added to the supplement to the postal voters list. According to the Citizens Information website: “If you are eligible for the postal voter list but are not included, you can apply for inclusion in the relevant supplement to the lists. The latest date for receipt of applications is 2 days after the date of dissolution of the Dáil in the case of a general election”. To do so you must pick up the relevant form at your nearest local authority and return before this deadline.
With Taoiseach Enda Kenny expected any day now to make the journey to the Park to dissolve the Dáil students would be well served to apply for the postal vote as soon as possible.