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Online voting registration in NI put on hold following snap election announcement

Northern Ireland chief electoral officer Graham Shields. Picture by Paul Faith/PA Wire

WORK to establish online voting registration in Northern Ireland has been put on hold following the announcement of the snap election in March.

Graham Shields, the north's outgoing chief electoral officer, said the new system was due to be completed within the next month.

However, the work which would have allowed people to register to vote online has had to be put to the side because of the fresh Assembly election on March 2.

The election was called on January 16 following the collapse of the Stormont Executive over the scandal surrounding the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme (RHI).

"Indeed had it not been for the election, it is very likely we would have been able to bring it in in the next month or so," Mr Shields told the BBC.

"Regretfully that work has had to be put to the side until we see through the election but it is coming and it will come later this year but unfortunately not before the election."

Virginia McVea, the former director of the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, will take over as the new chief electoral officer on February 1.

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