More Than 270 People Die From Fatigue-Related Illnesses After Counting Votes in Indonesia

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More Than 270 People Die From Fatigue-Related Illnesses After Counting Votes in Indonesia

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Ten days after Indonesia held the world’s biggest single day election, 270 election workers are dead from mostly fatigue-related illnesses after counting millions of paper ballots for hours at a time. 1,878 of the other staff had fallen ill as well.

About seven million people were helping count/monitor votes for the April 17 election. The staff were expected to work through the night in sweltering conditions that lead to their deaths or injuries.

The elections were the first time the country of 260 million people combined the presidential vote with national and regional parliamentary ballots, in order to save money.

Around 80% of the 193 million eligible voters cast their votes in more than 800,000 polling stations.

While the General Elections Commission of Indonesia claimed that the illnesses were all fatigue-related, there is a strong possibility that there are also some illnesses being passed about with 193 million paper ballots coming in and being counted by about seven million people.

Indonesia’s election commission plans to compensate surviving families 36 million rupiah (equivalent $2,500) for every deceased worker – roughly equivalent to one year’s pay at minimum wage, via the Nikkei Asian Review.

Both President Joko Widodo and rival candidate Prabowo Subianto have declared victory, though tallies suggested Widodo won the election by around 9-10 percentage points.

The General Elections Commission of Indonesia will finish vote counting and announce winners of the presidential and parliamentary elections on the 22th of May.