Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections

Праваабарончы цэнтр «Вясна» беларускі хельсінкскі камітэт


Hlusk: CEC rejects complaint by independent observer

Lidziya Yarmoshyna, head of the Central Election Commission
Lidziya Yarmoshyna, head of the Central Election Commission

Ihar Kiryn, an observer from the town of Hlusk, has received an answer from the Central Election Commission to his request asking to invalidate voting results at polling station No. 2.

The observer argued that voting procedures were accompanied by obvious and gross violations of the requirements of openness and transparency in the tabulation established by the Electoral Code.

A response signed by the chair of the Central Election Commission Lidziya Yarmoshyna, in particular, says that “the Electoral Code of the Republic of Belarus does not contain regulations governing the placement of observers and members of election commissions during vote counting. The position of the Central Commission on this issue is that during the vote count observers should have a real opportunity to see this procedure. This provision is contained in the guidelines and the training prepared by the Central Commission for members of election commissions. In this regard, we inform that in the preparation for the next elections attention of the organizers will be paid to the observance of counting procedures and ensuring conditions for observation of this election procedure. The information contained in your statement information that deals with a failure to announce the results of separate vote count at polling station No. 2 may indicate a violation of a procedural nature, and not the distortion of the will of voters. Finally, we inform that the electoral law provides for filing complaints with requests to invalidate election results at separate polling stations (Part 6, Article 79 of the Electoral Code of Belarus). Such complaints may only be submitted to the Central Commission by candidates for the President of the Republic of Belarus not later than on the third day after the election. Observers do not enjoy the right of submitting such complaints. In view of the above, your request can not be satisfied.”

Ihar Kiryn says that the response from the CEC chair Lidziya Yarmoshyna is a runaround reply. The observer cannot understand why a flagrant violation of the CEC recommendations will only be addressed “in preparation for the next elections.” According to the observer, only a full investigation including interviews of the commission members and the voters, as well as checking the ballots, will give an answer to the question about the actual results of voting at the polling station.

“Human Rights Defenders For Free Elections”