IT’S our duty to cast our vote at the ballot box this year.

This year could be quite a year in the UK, voting wise. Local elections, the break-up of the United Kingdom, Scottish independence, and an England intent on leaving the family of European countries – or at least renegotiating the relationship, demonstrates how important our vote will be.

That said, the European elections voting system is one of the worst ever foisted on the British electorate, where you don’t vote for an individual but for a party, and the party decides by ranking its candidates in order of preference who will be elected.

This may explain the poor turnout, so why persist with it? Then a “yes” vote for independence in Scotland could, in turn, influence the Westminster election in 2015, with the loss to Labour at Westminster of 40 MPs from Scotland.

Of course none of this could happen and the main focus could be on the UKIP party. Will there be a massive public protest voting for the UKIP at the European elections, but not voting for them at a general election. The social encyclicals underline the importance of participating in elections.

Norman Plaisted Vivian Road Newport