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The Scottish Local Government Elections Rules 2002

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Countermand or abandonment of poll on death of candidate

48.—(1) If at a contested election proof is given to the returning officer’s satisfaction before the result of the election is declared that one of the persons named or to be named as candidate in the ballot papers has died, then the returning officer shall countermand notice of the poll or, if polling has begun, direct that the poll be abandoned, and the provisions of section 45 of the Representation of the People Act 1983(1) apply in respect of filling any such vacancy as exists.

(2) Where the poll is abandoned by reason of a candidate’s death, the proceedings at or consequent on that poll shall be interrupted and the presiding officer at any polling station shall take the like steps (so far as not already taken) for the delivery to the returning officer of ballot boxes and of ballot papers and other documents as such officer is required to take on the close of the poll in due course, and the returning officer shall dispose of ballot papers and other documents in the returning officer’s possession as required to do on the completion in due course of the counting of the votes, but–

(a)it shall not be necessary for any ballot paper account to be prepared or verified; and

(b)the returning officer, without taking any step or further step for the counting of the ballot papers or of the votes, shall seal up all the ballot papers, whether the votes on them have been counted or not, and it shall not be necessary to seal up counted and rejected ballot papers in separate packets.

(3) The provisions of these Rules as to the inspection, production, retention and destruction of ballot papers and other documents relating to a poll at an election apply to any such documents relating to a poll abandoned by reason of a candidate’s death, with the following modifications:–

(a)ballot papers on which the votes were neither counted nor rejected shall be treated as counted ballot papers; and

(b)no order shall be made for the production or inspection of any ballot papers or for the opening of a sealed packet of counterfoils or certificates as to employment on duty on the day of the poll unless the order is made by a court with reference to a prosecution.

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