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Support for suggested election changes

The winner of last year's controversial East Douglas by-election is backing proposals to make Manx elections more transparent.

Chris Robertshaw says, based on his personal experiences, some changes are definitely needed.

One of the six candidates in the by-election, celebrity chef Kevin Woodford, was funded by an anonymous group of backers calling themselves the Manx Election Trust.

It was a move which drew criticism in some quarters, from members of the public and a number of politicians.

Mr Robertshaw says the whole experience was 'uncomfortable', but he wasn't surprised by a recent claim from Home Affairs Minister Adrian Earnshaw that nothing needed to change:

The Council of Ministers seeking the public's views on the proposed new rules on funding for election candidates.

Among other things, anonymous donations would be banned, and each candidate's spending would be capped at £2,000 - plus 50 pence per registered elector in each constituency.

Also suggested is the formal registration of political parties supporting candidates for the House of Keys, and political advertising by candidates on Manx Radio.

Consultation forms can be found at gov.im and the closing date for submissions is Friday, January 21.

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