Preparations for the election
THE ELECTORAL process was supervised by the Supreme Elections Committee which has seven members (appointed from a list of 15 nominated by parliament) - three from the GPC, two from Islah, one from the YSP and one independent.
In April, the government promised to revise the voting lists after complaints that up to half a million people (out of 4.6 million) were registered twice. A spokesman for the Supreme Elections Committee said that work on this would start within three weeks. About 13,000 people from 18 political parties were expected to take part in the revision process, but it seems to have been beset by continuing problems.
On May 17 Polaroid Corporation announced that it had won a contract to provide cameras and film for voter registration cards. A press release said: "Some 3.6 million voters will be registered at nearly 2,000 sites across the country between May and August. The Supreme Elections Committee's voter registration drive will be supported and maintained by Polaroid's distributor in Yemen, Jaied & Massoud. The paper-based ID cards feature a Polaroid Instant Color image and a security stamp. They will be used for both national and municipal elections."
Campaigning was allowed from August 2 until September 22.
Voter registration statistics (1993-97)
POLLING DAY was on Thursday September 23, just over a week before the president's current term was due to expire. According to the Yemeni constitution (Article 111), the president's term lasts for five calendar years from the date of taking the constitutional oath, in this case five years from October 2, 1994.
Parliament may delay an election for up to 90 days if it "cannot take place for any reason". Parliament may also approve a delay beyond 90 days "if the country is in a state of war, or suffering a natural disaster or another emergency situation, under which electing the President becomes impossible" (Article 113).