|Opini by Jose Belo, Chief Editor Tempo Semanal|
Timor-Leste is truly a democracy. One-person one vote. We have had national votes in 1999, two in 2001 and two in 2007, and we have been mostly free of elections fraud or cheating.
But what are we missing. We are missing good elections polling. No organization does scientific or independent election polling, or for that matter good polling on any subject.
Why do we need polling? We need polling so the Government can know what people really think about their program, performance and popularity. We need polling so that the Opposition can know what people really think about their program, performance and popularity. We need polling so that the world can know what the people really think. We need polling so that the people can know what other people are thinking.
What is “polling” – polling is the scientific and impartial gathering of people’s ideas about matters of public policy. To date we have no polling in the Timor-leste democracy – no polling.
Suara Timor Lorosae does polling for the Presidential campaign every day but it is not impartial, and it is not scientific. It is in fact a form of propaganda.
Why does the international community not do election polling in Timor-Leste, are they afraid of the results? Why does the business community not create a polling business? Are they afraid of the Government or Opposition parties? Why does the media not do real polling? Lack of capacity, impartiality or financial resources?
The CNE, STAE, Asia Foundation, IRI, UNDP, USAID, AusAID, EU, Presidency, Government, talk a lot about democracy, but they do not do hardcore political polling. Democrazy?