Ahead of the polls, journalist Sam Bolitho has been asking voters what they'll be looking for from the next government.
Presenter: Geraldine Coutts
Speakers: Sam Bolitho, journalist, voters Benny Willie, Sharon Warbur, Lesnday Kraw
BOLITHO: What you had was a campaign convoy 5 or 6 trucks packed with young people all blasting horns, music. It was quite a commotion and I spent most of the time on Saturday down at the market where most of the action was and there was quite a sight. On one side of the road, you had the and then on the otherside of the road down by the market, you had the Christian Democratic Party and each of them had their loud microphones and their PA systems all competing for space and then there were other people on the streets. The ones that I saw anyway looked a bit shocked by the commotion.
COUTTS: Alright, with all the people in town and at the market place and the campaign that's going on. Is there much of a police presence?
BOLITHO: Not that I've seen. Yeah, there was quite a lot of people around. I didn't see any police, although there didn't appear to be any need for it. It was all pretty peaceful. It was more of a festival atmosphere. Some of the people I spoke to told me the elections here are like the World Cup and that seems to be the spirit that people are taking to this election in the way that they're supporting their candidates.
There's going to be 300 police securing polling stations tomorrow and last week, when I spoke to Lionel Kaluat from the electoral office, he said that they're going to be taking no chances next week, that was, no sorry, and when the results start coming in, there's going to be a strong security presence around the electoral office.
COUTTS: Alright, so can you just give us a bit of an idea what the candidates are talking about?
BOLITHO: Yeah well, on Saturday morning, I followed around Ralph Reganvanu Land and Justice Party just to get a bit of a feel of what the young people are saying. He's got quite a strong youth base and the thing I kept hearing over and over again was time for a change or this is time for change. Young people are really engaged in this election and they know about corruption, world political issues and one of the things they kept saying is they're tired of the old guard and they want some fresh blood in parliament.
One of the people I spoke to was Benny Willie, whose a young reggae singer. So here's some of what he had to say.
WILLIE: Every young people want good leader for the better future, because our country now is very like corrupted people in our system. We saw in TV, we see in we're reading in the newspaper, every week we saw corruption there and we want change, we want change, because we want good leaders and we want have a better life.
COUTTS: Benny Willie. And I'm speaking with Sam Bolitho, whose with Ausnet and he's in Vanuatu at the moment.
Sam what are some of the big issues facing young people in Vanuatu?
BOLITHO: It's lack of jobs is the main one I think. There's a lot of people graduating from high school, but they just have no way to use that education and the jobs that are available often poorly paid. And this was something that a woman that I spoke to told me about.
Sharon Warbur is a single mother raising two children and this is what she told me.
WARBUR: Eh, well my big concern is about youth unemployment, since all the youths of the education that didn't have anything to do as far as scholarship training centre. Mainly goes to training centre and secondary schools, but they don't have opportunity because of lack of jobs in Vanuatu, so they are influenced by drugs like marijuana and violence and yeah, vandalism. So it's no good.
COUTTS: Sally Warbur there and Sam, you've also been speaking with women in the market place about the election. What do they saying, telling you?
BOLITHO: Well, as you know, politics is very local here. People really want good education, health and roads and something that came up with every women that I spoke to at the market here was the issue of free education. The government here provides about 100 dollars subsidy for education, but the reality is that school isn't free and they have to pay a lot of money for affording of books and clothes and things like that and that can be a huge burden for a lot of people.
Lesnday Kraw, was one of the market vendors that I spoke to. I think we've got some she said here.
KRAW: We want to a good leader to lead our country, and also to look at our needs, homes and villages. We are struggling for our children, for better education but the school fees are too expensive.
COUTTS: Sam, what's the market like this morning, is there much action there?
BOLITHO: It's actually fairly quiet. There's probably about a quarter of the stalls that are usually here.
Tomorrow's a public holiday, so I think a lot of the market vendors are taking a bit of a long weekend.