Está en la página 1de 200

MANUAL PRCTICO PARA OBSERVADORES ELECTORALES DE CORTA DURACIN

GOBIERNO DE ESPAA

MINISTERIO DE ASUNTOS EXTERIORES Y DE COOPERACIN

MANUAL PRCTICO PARA OBSERVADORES ELECTORALES DE CORTA DURACIN

MINISTERIO DE ASUNTOS EXTERIORES Y DE COOPERACIN

DIRECCIN GENERAL DE NACIONES UNIDAS, DERECHOS HUMANOS Y ORGANISMOS MULTILATERALES OFICINA DE DERECHOS HUMANOS

MADRID 2008 3

MINISTERIO DE ASUNTOS EXTERIORES Y DE COOPERACIN

SUBSECRETARA
Edita: SECRETARA GENERAL TCNICA VICESECRETARA GENERAL TCNICA Centro de Documentacin y Publicaciones IMPRENTA DEL MINISTERIO DE ASUNTOS EXTERIORES NIPO: 501-08-046-4 Depsito Legal: M. 16.114 - 2008

Y DE

COOPERACIN

Grupo de observadores de NU para las primeras elecciones democrticas de Surfrica en 1994.

Justo antes del inicio de una nueva edicin del Curso de capacitacin para observadores electorales de corta duracin, y en el ao en que Espaa ejerce la Presidencia de la Organizacin para la Seguridad y Cooperacin en Europa, el Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperacin publica este breve Manual prctico para observadores electorales de corta duracin elaborado por Isabel Menchn Lpez, de la Oficina de Derechos Humanos, cuyo fin es complementar las clases impartidas durante el curso y ayudar a los futuros observadores electorales de corta duracin a desempear mejor su cometido. Tanto este manual como los cursos de capacitacin para observadores de corta duracin, organizados conjuntamente por la Oficina de Derechos Humanos y la Escuela Diplomtica, ponen de manifiesto el compromiso de Espaa con el apoyo a la construccin democrtica y promocin de los derechos humanos y valores democrticos en todo el mundo que se traduce en una contribucin generosa al esfuerzo promovido por Organizaciones Internacionales como la OSCE, la Unin Europea o la Organizacin de Estados Americanos, as como diversas Organizaciones No Gubernamentales. No puede haber mejor contribucin que garantizar e incrementar la presencia de observadores especialmente cualificados en misiones de observacin electoral internacional. La ola democratizadora que recorri numerosos pases desde mediados de los aos 80, puso de manifiesto el profundo anhelo de todas las sociedades de conquistar y ejercer su derecho a la participacin poltica a travs de elecciones autnticas, vistas como verdadero instrumento de transformacin democrtica. Apoyar la celebracin de elecciones libres y competitivas constituye una prioridad poltica y un imperativo moral, no slo porque la celebracin de elecciones autnticas contribuye a la construccin y consolidacin de la democracia, sino tambin porque son un mecanismo eficaz para la reconstruccin de sociedades fracturadas y un elemento fundamental en todo proceso de la hoy llamada justicia transicional. Lejos de constituir un arro 7

gante ejercicio de injerencia, la observacin electoral se ha convertido en un instrumento de apoyo para la consolidacin democrtica y la prevencin y resolucin de conflictos. Con este manual, la Oficina de Derechos Humanos del Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y Cooperacin pretende realizar una pequea contribucin a la consolidacin democrtica y promocin de los derechos humanos, proporcionando un instrumento que sirva para mejorar la capacitacin de aquellas personas que al realizar labores de observacin electoral expresan su compromiso con los valores que sustentan la democracia y su solidaridad con las sociedades que anhelan su emancipacin poltica. Fernando Fernndez-Arias, Director de la Oficina de Derechos Humanos.

NDICE
PGINAS

A Para qu este Manual?........................................................................ B Por qu se estructura en ocho captulos?...................................... I Introduccin........................................................................................

13 13 15 19 19 20 20 23 23 23 23 23 24 27 27 28 28 29 29 29 29 30

II Preguntas claves respecto a la observacin electoral.................... 1.Qu es una misin de observacin electoral?....................... 2.Cules son los objetivos de una misin de observacin electoral?.......................................................................................... 3.Cules son los estndares internacionales mnimos que rigen las elecciones democrticas?.............................................. 4.Cmo pueden definirse unas elecciones autnticas?........... 5.Qu tipo de metodologa se aplica en las misiones de observacin electoral?................................................................. 6.Cul es el proceso de toma de decisin para decidir enviar una misin de observacin electoral?...................................... 6.1.mbito OSCE........................................................................ 6.2.mbito UE............................................................................. 7.Para qu una misin exploratoria electoral?............................. III Cmo se estructura una misin?....................................................... a.Core Team o Equipo dirigente................................................ b.Observadores de larga duracin................................................ c.Observadores de corta duracin.................................................. IV Core Team............................................................................................... 1.Qu funciones tiene el Core Team?......................................... 1.1.Anlisis del marco legal...................................................... 1.2.Anlisis del sistema de quejas y recursos..................... 1.3.Anlisis del comportamiento de los medios de comunicacin................................................................................
9

PGINAS

1.4.Informes de los observadores de larga duracin.......... 1.5.Declaracin preliminar.......................................................... 1.6.Informe final........................................................................... V Observadores de larga duracin........................................................ 1.Qu funciones tienen los observadores de larga duracin?. 2.Por cunto tiempo se despliegan?........................................... 3.Cmo se despliegan?................................................................... 4.Cmo observan?............................................................................ 5.Cmo informan?.............................................................................. 6.Qu aspectos del proceso electoral observan?......................... 6.1.El contexto y entorno poltico ......................................... 6.2.La Administracin Electoral................................................ 6.3.El censo electoral................................................................. 6.4.Registro de partidos y candidatos...................................... 6.5.Campaa electoral.................................................................. 6.6.Campaas de educacin al votante..................................... VI Observadores de Corta Duracin......................................................... 1.Salida de los observadores de corta duracin y llegada al pas anfitrin................................................................................... 2.Qu funciones desarrollan los OCD?......................................... 3.Cuestiones relevantes para la observacin de corta duracin. 3.1.Formularios............................................................................ 3.2.Metodologa del despliegue................................................. 3.3.Capacidad de penetracin de la observacin de corta duracin............................................................................... 4.Actividades de los OCD a su llegada al terreno...................... 4.1.Sesin informativa por parte de los observadores de larga duracin...................................................................... 4.2.Familiarizacin con el clima poltico del rea de responsabilidad.................................................................................. 4.3.Entrevistas con los actores electorales. Visibilidad....... 4.4.Localizacin y determinacin de la zona a observar..... 5.Premisas para la observacin de la votacin y el recuento... 6.Apertura de los colegios electorales......................................... 7.Observacin mltiple de colegios electorales...........................
10

30 31 31 33 33 34 34 35 35 36 36 36 38 39 40 41 43 43 44 44 44 44 45 45 45 46 46 47 47 48 49

PGINAS

7.1.Metodologa........................................................................... 7.2.Entorno.................................................................................... 7.3.Observacin dentro del colegio electoral......................... 7.3.1. Qu observar?................................................................ 7.3.2.Cmo valorar el proceso de votacin?........................... 8.Cierre y recuento............................................................................... 8.1.Qu hay que observar en el cierre?............................... 8.2.Qu hay que observar en el recuento?.......................... 9.Agregacin de los resultados....................................................... 10.Transmisin de los resultados de la observacin...................... 11.Formularios....................................................................................... VII Proceso de seleccin de los observadores electorales espaoles. 1.Consideraciones Generales........................................................... 2.Proceso de seleccin de los observadores espaoles en el mbito de la OSCE......................................................................... 3.Procesos de seleccin de los observadores espaoles en el mbito de la UE.............................................................................. VIII Cdigo de conducta............................................................................

50 50 51 51 53 53 53 53 54 55 55 69 69 70 70 73

ANEXOS
Anexo 1: Declaracin de Principios para la observacin electoral internacional y cdigo de conducta...................................... Anexo 2: Declaracin preliminar sobre la segunda vuelta de las elecciones presidenciales de Ucrania de 2004............................... Anexo 3: Declaracin preliminar sobre las elecciones generales de Bosnia Herzegovina de octubre 2006..................................... Anexo 4: Declaracin preliminar sobre las elecciones legislativas en Armenia en mayo 2006................................................................ Anexo 5: Declaracin preliminar sobre las elecciones presidenciales de Venezuela de diciembre 2005.................................................. Anexo 6: Declaracin preliminar sobre las elecciones legislativas de Gaza y Cisjordania de enero de 2006......................................... Anexo 7: Declaracin preliminar sobre las elecciones legislativas, presidenciales y al Senado de Nigeria de 2007.....................
11

81 101 125 141 157 167 179

12

PARA QU ESTE MANUAL? Tras el xito de las cinco ediciones de los cursos de capacitacin para observadores electorales de corta duracin organizados por la Oficina de Derechos Humanos del Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperacin con la colaboracin de la Escuela Diplomtica, la Oficina de Derechos Humanos ha decidido elaborar un manual prctico que permita proporcionar a los observadores electorales de corta duracin los conocimientos bsicos sobre observacin electoral internacional y las herramientas necesarias para el desempeo de sus funciones.

POR QU SE ESTRUCTURA EN OCHO CAPTULOS? Para poder desarrollar satisfactoriamente su labor, adems de conocer sus funciones, tareas y elementos que debe observar, el observador de corta duracin debe estar familiarizado con los principios y objetivos de la observacin electoral, la estructura de una misin de observacin, las funciones del Core Team, equipo dirigente, y de los observadores de larga duracin, el cdigo de conducta y los procesos de seleccin de los observadores de corta duracin. Por ello este manual realiza en su primer captulo una introduccin en la que se da cuenta del auge de la observacin electoral en estos quince aos. En el segundo captulo aborda las preguntas claves referidas a la observacin electoral (qu es una misin de observacin electoral, cules son sus objetivos, cules son los estndares internacionales para unas elecciones democrticas, etc.?). El tercer captulo explica la estructura de una misin de observacin electoral, mientras que el cuarto, quinto y sexto captulo se dedican respectivamente al Core Team, los observadores de larga duracin y los observadores de corta duracin con referencia detallada a sus funciones, aspectos observados y metodologa utilizada. El sptimo captulo aborda el cdigo de conducta para observadores electorales y el octavo explica el proceso de seleccin de los observadores de corta y larga duracin.
13

14

I. INTRODUCCIN
La expansin de la observacin electoral durante estos ltimos veinte aos est directamente vinculada a la tendencia global hacia la democratizacin. De hecho, al amparo de la ola democratizadora iniciada en los aos 80 en Iberoamrica y que tras la cada del muro de Berln recorri el espacio de la antigua Unin Sovitica, parte de frica y Asia, numerosos pases celebraron sus primeras elecciones multipartidistas iniciando de este modo un proceso de transicin democrtica o como estrategia de salida a una situacin de conflicto. En este ltimo contexto las elecciones se convertan en un instrumento til de estabilizacin de sociedades profundamente divididas y contribuan a llevar a las partes en conflicto a una dinmica de resolucin de conflicto pacfica y democrtica. Las elecciones no son equivalentes a democracia sin embargo sin ellas no puede establecerse un gobierno participativo y representativo. En otras
15

palabras, no puede construirse un sistema democrtico que se caracteriza, entre otros elementos, por elecciones transparentes y competitivas, respeto a los derechos humanos, divisin de poderes, imperio de la ley, transparencia y responsabilidad de las autoridades elegidas, buen gobierno y una sociedad civil fuerte y estructurada. La celebracin de las elecciones puede ser vista como un instrumento til para resolver el conflicto societario y canalizar este conflicto hacia la esfera poltica. En este sentido, la observacin electoral garantizara que el conflicto permanezca en la esfera poltica. Al evaluar y reforzar la transparencia de los procesos electorales, la observacin electoral contribuye a la promocin y proteccin de los derechos humanos, la democracia y la paz. Varias organizaciones internacionales, de carcter universal, como las Naciones Unidas, y de carcter regional como la Organizacin de Estados Americanos (OEA), la Unin Africana (UA), la Unin Europea (UE), y la Organizacin para la Seguridad y Cooperacin en Europa (OSCE), realizan en la actualidad observacin electoral junto con organizaciones internacionales no gubernamentales como el Centro Carter, IFES, etc. Mientras que la observacin electoral ha decado en el seno de las Naciones Unidas, pionera y muy activa tras la segunda guerra mundial coincidiendo con los procesos de descolonizacin, la OSCE y la UE han realizado grandes esfuerzos humanos y financieros en materia de observacin electoral en esta ltima dcada. La UE ha desplegado desde el ao 2000 hasta agosto del 2007 unas 57 misiones de observacin electoral. Por su parte la OSCE ha enviado desde el ao 1996 hasta agosto del 2007 unas 103 misiones de observacin electoral a pases con democracias no consolidadas. Ambas organizaciones comparten una metodologa similar que fue sistematizada en 1996 por la OSCE con la publicacin de su primer manual de observacin electoral y en 2000 por la UE con la publicacin de la importante Comunicacin de la Comisin, COM (2000) 191, que represent un punto de inflexin en la poltica de la UE en materia de observacin electoral al dar ms consistencia y coherencia a sus misiones de observacin. Existe una divisin geogrfica entre ambas organizaciones en virtud de la cual la UE observa en frica, Asia, Amrica Latina y parte de Oriente Medio. En el caso de la OSCE, sus 56 Estados miembros se comprometieron desde 1990 en el Documento de Copenhague, compromiso reforzado en la Cum 16

bre de Estambul en 1999, a invitar a la Oficina para las Instituciones Democrticas y los Derechos Humanos, ODIHR en sus siglas inglesas y con sede en Varsovia, a observar los procesos electorales que tuvieran lugar en sus territorios, es decir Europa, espacio de la antigua Unin Sovitica, Canad y Estados Unidos. Mientras que hasta hace unos aos la ODIHR observaba exclusivamente en las democracias de tipo emergente, sta empez hace unos aos a enviar a democracias consolidadas misiones de observacin electoral reducidas compuestas por una docena de expertos electorales y legales con vistas a recoger prcticas electorales positivas de estas democracias y prestar mayor atencin a potenciales elementos frgiles de dichos procesos, como el voto electrnico, el voto por correo con riesgo de comprometer el secreto del voto. As pues junto a las mltiples observaciones electorales llevadas a cabo por la ODIHR en estos ltimos aos en democracias emergentes, las elecciones legislativas italianas de abril 2006, las elecciones legislativas espaolas de marzo 2004, las elecciones presidenciales americanas de noviembre 2004, y las elecciones legislativas del Reino Unido de mayo del 2005 fueron, entre otras muchas, observadas por la ODIHR. Las evaluaciones estn disponibles en la pgina web de la ODIHR: http://osce.org/odihr-elections/14207.html Se pretenda tambin con estas observaciones electorales realizadas en democracias establecidas dar satisfaccin a aquellos otros Estados participantes de la OSCE que si bien aceptaban que sus procesos electorales fueran observados, reclamaban en virtud del principio de reciprocidad observar en democracias consolidadas. La observacin electoral se ha convertido en un elemento importante de la poltica exterior de la UE, y de su poltica de cooperacin al desarrollo, constituyendo una manifestacin prctica del firme compromiso de la UE hacia la promocin y proteccin de los derechos humanos y la democracia. De hecho los resultados de las misiones de observacin electoral condicionan en cierta medida las estrategias de la UE en materia de cooperacin y desarrollo ya que, en conformidad con los Acuerdos de Cotonou (2000), la ayuda al desarrollo est estrechamente vinculada a los progresos realizados por los pases receptores de esa ayuda en sus procesos de democratizacin. As pues, en virtud de esa clusula democrtica, la Comisin Europea ha llegado a suspender proyectos de cooperacin y desarrollo destinados a interlocutores gubernamentales, cuando alguna Misin de Observacin Electoral de la UE ha dictaminado que las elecciones observa2

17

das no cumplan con los estndares mnimos internacionales para las elecciones democrticas. En diciembre del 2006 la UE aprob el Reglamento (CE) N. 1889/2006 del Parlamento Europeo y del Consejo por el que se estableca un instrumento nuevo financiero para la promocin de la democracia y de los derechos humanos a escala mundial para el perodo 2007-2013. Este nuevo instrumento Europeo para la promocin de la democracia y los derechos humanos tiene, entre otros objetivos estratgicos, la finalidad de afianzar la confianza en los procesos electorales y aumentar la fiabilidad de los mismos, en particular con misiones de observacin de las elecciones y apoyando a las organizaciones de la sociedad civil local que participan en dichos procesos. (Ttulo 1, Artculo 1, Prrafo 2c del citado Reglamento).

18

II. PREGUNTAS CLAVES RESPECTO A LA OBSERVACIN ELECTORAL


1.QU ES UNA MISIN DE OBSERVACIN ELECTORAL? Una misin de observacin electoral realiza a travs de una determinada metodologa un anlisis en profundidad de un proceso electoral y proporciona una evaluacin independiente, neutral y profesional del mismo. La misin de observacin electoral siempre se despliega a invitacin de un pas soberano por lo que el mandato del observador consiste en observar e informar, de ninguna manera podr el observador interferir en el proceso electoral. En este sentido difiere de la figura de la Supervisin en la que la Comunidad Internacional asume la direccin del proceso electoral. ste fue el caso de Bosnia, Kosovo y Timor Este cuyos procesos electorales fueron supervisados por las Naciones Unidas y la OSCE mientras estaban bajo la tutela de la Comunidad Internacional.
19

2. CULES SON LOS OBJETIVOS DE UNA MISIN DE OBSERVACIN ELECTORAL? Una misin de observacin electoral pretende contribuir a: 1.Reforzar la transparencia del proceso electoral y de este modo incrementar la confianza del electorado en el mismo. 2.Reducir las posibilidades de fraude, de prcticas irregulares y de intimidacin. La presencia de una misin de observacin electoral creble y visible tendr un efecto disuasorio sobre la posible comisin de fraude. 3.La prevencin y resolucin de conflicto al impulsar la aceptacin de los resultados por parte de todos los actores electorales, y as desactivar la tensin y violencia que pueda surgir durante el periodo postelectoral. 4.Fortalecer el respeto por los derechos humanos, ya que las elecciones constituyen en s una celebracin de los derechos humanos. 5.Fortalecer la legitimidad de las autoridades surgidas de un proceso electoral transparente, elemento esencial en procesos de estabilizacin y reconstruccin tras la finalizacin de un conflicto. 6.La construccin y consolidacin de la democracia elaborando recomendaciones que tienen por objetivo mejorar los procesos electorales posteriores.

3. CULES SON LOS ESTNDARES INTERNACIONALES MNIMOS QUE RIGEN LAS ELECCIONES DEMOCRTICAS? Estos estndares se derivan de los principios universales recogidos en los distintos Tratados Internacionales de Derechos Humanos de Naciones Unidas, de los compromisos contrados por los Miembros de la OSCE en el Documento de Copenhague de 1990, y de otros tratados como la Convencin Europea para la Proteccin y los Derechos Humanos y de las Libertades Fundamentales del Consejo de Europa, el Tratado sobre la Unin Europea y la Carta de la Unin Europea de los Derechos Fundamentales. La Declaracin Universal de los Derechos Humanos de 1948 establece en su artculo 21 el derecho universal a elecciones autnticas: todo el mundo tiene derecho a participar en el gobierno de su pas, directamente o a travs de representantes libremente elegidos La voluntad del pueblo ser la base de la autoridad del gobierno; esta voluntad se expresar mediante elecciones
20

peridicas y autnticas que se celebrarn por sufragio universal, igualitario y voto secreto o por procedimientos equivalentes de votacin libre. El Pacto Internacional sobre Derechos Civiles y Polticos reitera y desarrolla los derechos establecidos en la Declaracin Universal de Derechos Humanos. Su artculo 25 otorga a todo ciudadano sin discriminacin alguna el derecho de voto y de presentarse como candidato. Los estndares internacionales para elecciones democrticas que utilizan las misiones de observacin electoral para evaluar los procesos electorales son los siguientes: 1.Sufragio Universal. Este principio hace referencia al derecho de cualquier ciudadano con derecho a voto a votar. Este derecho debe definirse lo ms ampliamente posible. No deben establecerse restricciones por razones de gnero, raza, ideologa o religin. Las restricciones de derechos civiles y polticos de ciudadanos condenados por un delito deberan ser proporcionales al delito, y el derecho de voto deber reestablecerse una vez cumplida la sentencia. Este derecho requiere un proceso de registro censal eficaz, imparcial, no discriminatorio y fiable. A travs del registro censal (en un contexto de registro activo) pueden excluirse segmentos de la poblacin, como minoras o bastiones de la oposicin, mediante el marco legal o durante la aplicacin de la ley a travs de sutiles estrategias de exclusin. Un censo con ciertos niveles de imperfeccin desvirta los resultados de las elecciones y conculca el derecho al sufragio universal. La elaboracin del censo constituye una fase esencial del ciclo electoral, y ser objeto de un anlisis minucioso por parte de la misin de observacin. 2.Derecho a presentarse como candidato. Como el sufragio universal activo este derecho debe definirse lo ms ampliamente posible sin restricciones relativas al gnero, la raza, la ideologa, la religin o afiliaciones polticas pasadas. A travs del proceso de registro de candidatos y partidos tambin se pueden excluir candidatos y partidos de la carrera electoral mediante sutiles estrategias de exclusin como la obligacin de depositar grandes cantidades de dinero, de recabar grandes cantidades de firmas de apoyo, de aprobar difciles exmenes lingsticos, etc, que pueden discriminar a partidos pequeos con pocos recursos financieros y representantes de minoras. 3.Sufragio libre. Unas elecciones autnticas requieren que todos los ciudadanos disfruten de sus derechos fundamentales de libertad de expre 21

sin, asociacin, asamblea y movimiento. El votante debe poder expresar su opcin poltica mediante un voto libre de violencia e intimidacin. 4.Sufragio igualitario. Hace referencia al diseo de las circunscripciones e implica que cada voto debe tener el mismo valor. El nmero de representantes en cada circunscripcin debera ser proporcional a la poblacin electoral bajo un sistema de representacin proporcional. En un sistema de representacin mayoritario la poblacin de las circunscripciones debera ser aproximadamente equivalente. Se admite una diferencia de hasta el 10%. 5.Sufragio informado. Implica el derecho del votante a emitir un voto informado. Es importante garantizar este derecho a travs de campaas eficaces de educacin al votante en contextos de alto nivel de analfabetismo. 6.Voto secreto. Se debe garantizar al votante la posibilidad de expresar libremente su eleccin en la privacidad de una cabina de votacin segura. El principio del secreto del voto constituye a menudo la ltima salvaguardia para que el votante exprese libremente su voluntad en un entorno intimidatorio. El voto familiar puede poner en riesgo el voto de las mujeres. 7.Igualdad de oportunidades entre partidos y candidatos. Implica garantizar las mismas condiciones para los contendientes en un proceso electoral. Implica en concreto un acceso equitativo para todos los partidos y candidatos a los recursos estatales incluidos los medios de comunicacin estatales, imparcialidad y neutralidad por parte de la Administracin Estatal, Local y Electoral. Los candidatos y partidos deben competir sobre la base de un tratamiento igual e imparcial de la ley y de las distintas Autoridades. 8.El derecho a un recuento justo. Hace referencia al derecho de los votantes a que se contabilicen debidamente, sin manipulaciones ni falsificaciones, los votos, a que los resultados anunciados reflejen fielmente la voluntad popular libremente expresada. 9.Elecciones peridicas. Deben garantizarse para tomar nota de la voluntad cambiante del electorado. Requiere que las elecciones se celebren a intervalos regulares. Se admite como perodo mximo entre elecciones el de siete aos para elecciones presidenciales, y entre cuatro o cinco aos para elecciones legislativas.
22

4.CMO PUEDEN DEFINIRSE UNAS ELECCIONES AUTNTICAS? Unas elecciones autnticas son unas elecciones libres y competitivas en condiciones iguales para todos los partidos y candidatos en liza, donde todos los votantes con derecho a voto han sido censados y pueden ejercer libremente su derecho a voto y donde los resultados reflejan fielmente la voluntad informada de los votantes. 5. QU TIPO DE METODOLOGA SE APLICA EN LAS MISIONES DE OBSERVACIN ELECTORAL? Una eleccin es la culminacin de un proceso que se desarrolla durante un determinado periodo de tiempo, por ello tanto la UE como la OSCE al igual que otras Organizaciones Internacionales han desarrollado una metodologa exhaustiva que cubre todas las fases del ciclo electoral, fase preelectoral, votacin, recuento y fase inmediatamente post electoral con el seguimiento de los contenciosos electorales. 6. CUL ES EL PROCESO DE TOMA DE DECISIN PARA DECIDIR ENVIAR UNA MISIN DE OBSERVACIN ELECTORAL? 6.1.mbito OSCE Dentro del mbito de la OSCE sus 56 Estados Participantes se comprometieron a partir de 1990 a invitar a la ODIHR a observar las elecciones que tuvieran lugar en sus territorios. 6.2.mbito Unin Europea La decisin de enviar una misin de observacin electoral constituye en s misma una manifestacin poltica de la UE de contribuir al esfuerzo de democratizacin de un pas determinado. La Comisin establece una lista de prioridades que es discutida en los distintos grupos de trabajo intergubernamentales. Esa lista de prioridades se establece de acuerdo con cuatro criterios: a Una evaluacin previa realizada por el Consejo sobre la situacin poltica del pas en cuestin. b El efecto potencial de una observacin electoral de la UE sobre el proceso de democratizacin del pas.
23

PGINAS c La implicacin de la UE en proyectos de cooperacin y desarrollo en el pas.

d Disponibilidad de recursos. Los recursos financieros son limitados. La UE dedic en el ao 2005, 15 millones de euros para financiar las misiones de observacin electoral. Este presupuesto se duplic en el ao 2006. A partir de 2007, las misiones de observacin electorales son financiadas mediante el nuevo Instrumento Financiero Europeo para la promocin de la democracia y los derechos humanos establecido por el Reglamento (CE) N. 1889/2006 del Parlamento Europeo y del Consejo de 20 de diciembre de 2006. El presupuesto dedicado a misiones de observacin electoral para 2007 es de 30, 1 millones de euros. La decisin definitiva sobre el despliegue de una misin de observacin electoral es tomada por el/la Comisario/a de Relaciones Exteriores de la Comisin, y depender del diagnstico de una misin exploratoria electoral. Una vez decidido el envo de una misin de observacin electoral, se firmar un Memorando de Entendimiento con las Autoridades del pas cuyas elecciones se va a observar. La Misin de observacin electoral de la UE, una vez desplegada, es completamente independiente. Se ha producido un incremento exponencial en el nmero de misiones de observacin electoral desplegadas por La UE. sta ha ido observando desde el ao 2000 hasta el ao 2005 una media de 8 a 10 elecciones anuales. En 2006 observ 13 elecciones y en 2007 habr observado unas 15 elecciones. 7.PARA QU UNA MISIN EXPLORATORIA ELECTORAL? Para evitar que una misin de observacin electoral corra el riesgo de legitimar un proceso fraudulento, se despliega una Misin Exploratoria antes de adquirir cualquier compromiso de observar unas elecciones. En la OSCE la misin de evaluacin de necesidades, Needs Assessment Mission, responde al mismo objetivo que la Misin Exploratoria de la UE. La Misin Exploratoria, compuesta por un grupo reducido de expertos electorales, legales, de logstica y seguridad, desplegada unos cuatro meses antes de la celebracin de las elecciones, evaluar si la Misin de Observacin Electoral es aconsejable, til y viable.
24

Una Misin Exploratoria evaluar por lo tanto: a el entorno preelectoral; si se garantiza el respeto a los Derechos Humanos y libertades Fundamentales sin los cuales no pueden celebrarse elecciones autnticas; si se dan las condiciones mnimas para la celebracin de elecciones democrticas. Concretamente si el marco legal permite elecciones competitivas. Por lo tanto se analizar, entre otros elementos, la existencia o no de libertad de campaa, si se garantiza el sufragio universal y por lo tanto si los niveles de registro de votantes son aceptables. Se analizar si las condiciones para el registro de candidaturas permiten la participacin de una pluralidad de partidos y candidatos, si se garantiza un acceso razonable de los contendientes a los medios de comunicacin, y se estudiar la composicin y estructura de la Administracin Electoral en todos sus niveles; b el valor aadido que, segn los interlocutores del proceso electoral, pueda aportar una misin de observacin electoral al mismo; En concreto si la misin de observacin puede contribuir a reforzar la transparencia del proceso electoral y la confianza del electorado en ste; c si las condiciones de seguridad y logsticas sobre el terreno permiten el despliegue de una misin de observacin electoral; Debe garantizarse la libertad de movimiento de los observadores, quienes deben poder desplazarse libremente por toda la geografa del pas en cuestin y entrevistarse con todos los actores del proceso electoral. Tras las conclusiones de la Misin Exploratoria o de la Needs Assessment Mission se decidir el envo o no de una misin de observacin electoral.

25

26

III. CMO SE ESTRUCTURA UNA MISIN


La estructura de una misin de observacin electoral refleja la necesidad de cubrir todas las fases del proceso electoral. a Core Team o Equipo dirigente Est encabezado por el Jefe de Misin. En el caso de la UE se trata normalmente de un eurodiputado del Parlamento Europeo designado por la Comisin. Se ha querido asociar el Parlamento Europeo en las misiones de observacin electoral de la UE, por ser el rgano por excelencia donde reside la soberana popular europea, rgano elegido por sufragio universal, y porque su representante como jefe de misin se halla en una posicin idnea para impulsar el seguimiento poltico de las recomendaciones producidas por la Misin de Observacin Electoral. Es totalmente independiente de la Comisin Europea, y el responsable ltimo de la Declaracin Preliminar.
27

Est tambin compuesta por el Jefe de Misin Adjunto, y los diferentes expertos: experto electoral, experto poltico en caso de que el pas presente una situacin poltica compleja, experto legal, experto en logstica, experto en seguridad si la situacin lo requiere, experto en medios de comunicacin y coordinador de observador de larga duracin. El equipo central se despliega aproximadamente dos meses y medio antes de la celebracin de los comicios, y permanece en el pas unas dos o tres semanas despus de las elecciones para hacer un seguimiento del perodo postelectoral. b Observadores de larga duracin Se despliegan por un perodo de aproximadamente dos meses, en grupos de dos por toda la geografa nacional. Analizan el perodo preelectoral e inmediatamente posterior a las elecciones. c Observadores de corta duracin Se despliegan por un perodo aproximado de diez das, en equipos de dos por todo el territorio. Observan el da de la votacin y el recuento.

Misin de Observacin Electoral para las elecciones Presidenciales y Legislativas del 20 de mayo en Malawi
Jefe de Misin Jefe adjunto de Misin Experto legal Experto electoral Experto en medios de comunicacin Coordinador OLD Experto en Operaciones 22 Observadores de Larga 53 Observadores de Corta Duracin

28

IV. CORE TEAM


1.QU FUNCIONES TIENE EL CORE TEAM? 1.1. Anlisis del marco legal El experto legal analiza el marco legal determinando si cumple los estndares internacionales para elecciones democrticas, y con la ayuda de los informes de los observadores de larga duracin desplegados sobre el terreno evala si se aplica de forma coherente e imparcial. El marco legal debe garantizar el disfrute de los derechos y libertades fundamentales y, permitir la celebracin de elecciones libres, abiertas y competitivas. 1.2.Anlisis del sistema de quejas y recursos El experto legal analiza si la ley electoral proporciona a los contendientes la posibilidad de plantear recursos contra posibles violaciones de la ley electoral, si establece de forma clara el sistema de recursos aplicable y prev unos
29

plazos razonables que no priven a los contendientes de sus derechos electorales. Tambin evala si la ley garantiza la independencia e imparcialidad de los organismos responsables de la resolucin de los recursos, es decir la Administracin Electoral y rganos judiciales. Hace un seguimiento de los recursos presentados durante y despus de la campaa y evala si se resolvieron con independencia, imparcialidad y en los plazos previstos. 1.3.Anlisis del comportamiento de los medios de comunicacin Unos medios de comunicacin libres e independientes constituyen un elemento esencial para la consecucin de unas elecciones democrticas. Las Autoridades deben garantizar una libertad de informacin sin intimidacin, obstculos, ni censura. El experto en medios de comunicacin estudiar en primer lugar si se garantiza la libertad de informacin, si el escenario meditico es plural, y si el electorado recibe una informacin suficiente y equilibrada para tomar una decisin informada. En cuanto a los medios de comunicacin estatales, dicho experto estudiar si las reglas que rigen el acceso de los contendientes a esos medios son equitativas y si se aplican correctamente. Evaluar por lo tanto, si los candidatos y partidos tienen un acceso equitativo a los medios de comunicacin estatales. Har tambin un anlisis estadstico de la cobertura de la campaa electoral por parte de esos medios, para evaluar si cumplen con su obligacin de proporcionar una cobertura neutral e imparcial de la campaa electoral. Para evaluar si los medios de comunicacin estatales escritos, televisivos y radiofnicos proporcionan una informacin equilibrada y neutral sobre la campaa y los contendientes, el experto coordinar un equipo de profesionales locales que debern determinar la cantidad de tiempo y espacio dedicado a cada candidato y partido Tambin evaluar con la ayuda de esos monitores si la cobertura de las campaas electorales de los candidatos ha sido positiva, neutral o negativa. Este anlisis cualitativo y cuantitativo se llevar a cabo tambin para los medios de comunicacin privados ya que se pretende tambin evaluar el impacto de los medios de comunicacin privados sobre la campaa electoral. 1.4.Informes de los observadores de larga duracin El Core Team recibe los informes de los observadores de larga duracin y extrae las pautas generales para todo el pas.
30

1.5.Declaracin Preliminar El Jefe de Misin con la ayuda de su equipo redacta la declaracin preliminar sustentada en las observaciones de los observadores de larga y corta duracin y derivada de sus propios anlisis. sta se emite a ms tardar dos das despus de las elecciones, perodo de mxima atencin meditica. La Declaracin Preliminar proporciona una evaluacin independiente del proceso electoral segn las variables siguientes: Imparcialidad y eficacia de la Administracin Electoral. Libertad de campaa dada a partidos y candidatos. Uso de los Recursos Estatales. Acceso de los contendientes a los medios de comunicacin. Carcter universal del sufragio. Condiciones de registro de partidos y candidatos. Desarrollo de la votacin y recuento. Cualquier otro asunto relativo al carcter democrtico de las elecciones.

1.6.Informe final Todos los miembros del Core Team contribuyen al informe final. ste se publica entre uno y tres meses despus de la publicacin de los resultados definitivos. Es un informe exhaustivo que es presentado en rueda de prensa por el jefe de Misin acompaado por el jefe adjunto de la Misin a las autoridades, partidos polticos y sociedad civil del pas anfitrin. Est redactado con un enfoque constructivo, subrayando los elementos positivos del proceso electoral y mencionando los aspectos negativos y mejorables que sern objeto de atencin en el importante captulo dedicado a las recomendaciones. Se presta cada vez mayor atencin a las recomendaciones ya que pretenden subsanar las deficiencias identificadas y por lo tanto, mejorar los procesos posteriores. Tanto las declaraciones preliminares como los informes finales de las misiones de observacin electoral de la OSCE y UE, pueden consultarse en las siguientes pginas de internet de la OSCE y de la UE respectivamente: http://osce.org/odihr-elections/14207.html http://ec.europa.eu/comm/external_relations/human_rights/eu_election_ass_ observ/index.htm
31

32

V. OBSERVADORES DE LARGA DURACIN


1. QU FUNCIONES TIENEN LOS OBSERVADORES DE LARGA DURACIN (OLD)? Los observadores de larga duracin son los ojos y los odos de la Misin y por lo tanto, pieza fundamental de la misin de observacin. Su principal funcin es la de observar, recogiendo informacin, e informar al core team sobre las conclusiones de sus observaciones. Son tambin responsables del despliegue de los observadores de corta duracin (OCD), de proporcionarles informacin a travs de un briefing sobre el desarrollo del proceso electoral en su regin y comunicar al core team, los resultados de las observaciones de los OCD sobre la votacin y el recuento el da de las elecciones. Deben por lo tanto tener una gran capacidad analtica, ciertas habilidades logsticas, y habilidades sociales para entrevistarse con los actores del proceso electoral
33

2.POR CUNTO TIEMPO SE DESPLIEGAN? Se despliegan por un perodo que oscila entre un mes y medio a dos meses. Observan el proceso preelectoral, la campaa, la votacin, el recuento, la agregacin de resultados y el perodo postelectoral con el anuncio de los resultados, y el seguimiento de los recursos electorales y su resolucin. Durante los tres primeros das de su estancia en la capital, los miembros del Core team les proporcionarn informacin valiosa sobre: El marco legal que regula las elecciones, el sistema electoral, la estructura y composicin de la Administracin Electoral, el proceso de registro, el sistema de votacin. La situacin poltica del pas. Elementos claves del proceso electoral a los que los OLD debern prestar atencin por suscitar la preocupacin de los interlocutores electorales y del Core team. Cuestiones pertinentes relativas a la seguridad. Cuestiones logsticas, financieras. Cuestiones relativas al envo de los Informes, sistema de envo utilizado y periodicidad de los mismos. 3.CMO SE DESPLIEGAN? Se despliegan en su rea de responsablilidad en equipos de dos personas por cuestiones de seguridad, pero tambin por conveniencia metodolgica ya que 4 ojos ven ms que dos ojos. Las conclusiones de la observacin del equipo son el resultado de la interaccin de los anlisis de dos personas, y el contraste de sus perspectivas que pueden complementarse o diferir. Ello aporta lgicamente una mayor riqueza a la informacin transmitida al Core Team. Se busca un despliegue que cubra la mayor parte de la geografa nacional, o por lo menos las zonas ms representativas a nivel poltico y demogrfico. El despliegue de los OLD debe asegurar un alcance lo ms extenso posible, siempre teniendo en cuenta la existencia de zonas prioritarias por su peso poltico o demogrfico.
34

4.CMO OBSERVAN? 1.Mantienen entrevistas con los partidos, candidatos, la Administracin Electoral, las Autoridades Locales, organizaciones de la Sociedad Civil (organizaciones de observadores locales, de derechos humanos, etc.), votantes y cualquier otra organizacin u organismo que tengan alguna implicacin o impacto en el proceso electoral. 2.Asisten a los mtines de campaa de los partidos y candidatos. 3.Asisten a las reuniones que mantiene la Administracin Electoral con los actores electorales y polticos, en caso de existir, y cuando las sesiones son pblicas. 4.Asisten a los seminarios de formacin de los miembros de los colegios electorales. 5.CMO INFORMAN? Los observadores debern realizar un informe semanal que enviarn al Coordinador de los OLD para el Core team en el que proporcionarn informacin lo ms precisa y exhaustiva posible sobre los aspectos del proceso electoral a observar, y sobre cualquier asunto de especial inters para el core team. Aparte de esos informes semanales, podrn si se producen hechos graves o incidentes reseables, (graves violaciones de los derechos y libertades fundamentales de los candidatos o votantes, graves episodios de violencia, etc.), mandar informes diarios, llamados flash report o incident report. Los observadores debern asegurarse de que sus observaciones son precisas y exhaustivas, y sus conclusiones deben basarse sobre un anlisis imparcial y objetivo de sus observaciones y sobre hechos comprobados. Debern en todo momento, distinguir claramente entre hechos observados directamente, y afirmaciones o denuncias realizadas por los interlocutores electorales a los que se pedir que las fundamenten en la medida de lo posible. Aunque no constituyan hechos directamente observados por los OLD, las alegaciones no contrastadas (por ejemplo un partido de la oposicin alega que el partido gobernante est comprando votos mediante la entrega de sacos de arroz o dinero a votantes, o que se est practicando actos de violencia contra partidarios y candidatos de la oposicin) pueden figurar en los informes de los OLD como tales ya que constituyen elementos tiles para el anlisis del proceso electoral. De hecho contribuyen a reflejar el clima polti 35

co predominante y constituyen, por otra parte, acusaciones susceptibles de ser comprobadas. 6.QU ASPECTOS DEL PROCESO ELECTORAL OBSERVAN? 6.1.El contexto y entorno poltico. El observador de larga duracin analizar el contexto poltico de su rea de responsabilidad, y evaluar si el entorno poltico permite una competicin electoral abierta y plural y una votacin libre. Con este fin analizar si se respetan los derechos polticos y civiles de votantes y candidatos. Evaluar si el clima poltico es pacfico, o por lo contrario se caracteriza por la violencia e intimidacin dirigidas a los actores del proceso electoral, y por profundas fracturas polticas y honda desconfianza entre los actores polticos y con respecto al proceso electoral. En este ltimo caso podr anticipar la existencia de problemas a la hora de aceptar los resultados por parte de algunos actores polticos. Estudiar los principales rasgos del sistema de partidos predominante en la regin (si se trata de partidos de base ideolgica, fuertemente estructurados y disciplinados o partidos dbiles con lealtades que fluctuan entorno a personalidades, y de corte clientelar etc.). Tambin analizar las principales cuestiones planteadas en los programas de cada partido de su regin. 6.2La Administracin Electoral. El observador de larga duracin evaluar la actuacin de la Administracin Electoral en trminos de su independencia, imparcialidad, transparencia y eficacia. La administracin electoral es el rgano encargado de administrar, gestionar y llevar a cabo las elecciones. Es por lo tanto, un rgano clave del proceso electoral. a Independencia de la Administracin Electoral La administracin electoral puede estructurarse como un rgano compuesto por: a miembros profesionales e independientes procedentes de la judicatura, otros organismos y la sociedad civil, o b una representacin equilibrada de partidos polticos.
36

En ambos casos, la administracin electoral deber aplicar correctamente la legislacin electoral y los reglamentos, y llevar a cabo sus funciones sin interferencia del gobierno, ni de cualquier actor electoral. La independencia de la Administracin Electoral se ve reforzada por una parte, con el establecimiento de un rgano permanente, o en su defecto la creacin de un comit ejecutivo permanente. En ausencia de los dos supuestos anteriores se deber al menos garantizar un mandato fijo a sus miembros. Por otra parte, dotar a la administracin electoral de su propio presupuesto le permitir ser ms impermeable a las posibles interferencias por parte del gobierno y partidos polticos. El observador de larga duracin deber evaluar si la administracin electoral es independiente en su actuacin. b Imparcialidad de la Administracin Electoral La Administracin Electoral debe actuar de forma imparcial sin favorecer a ningn partido ni candidato. c Transparencia de la Administracin Electoral La Administracin Electoral debe actuar de forma transparente. Sus reuniones debern ser abiertas, y si as no fuera el caso, deber al menos dar publicidad a sus decisiones en el menor tiempo posible. Deber tambin proporcionar a todos los actores electorales informacin vital relativa al proceso electoral con gran impacto sobre la transparencia del mismo, como el censo, nmero de papeletas y tarjetas de votacin emitidas y distribuidas, sistema de reclutamiento de los miembros de las mesas electorales, etc. d Eficacia de la Administracin Electoral Como rgano responsable de la gestin y conduccin de las elecciones, la Administracin Electoral deber cumplir con eficacia sus funciones. El observador evaluar la viabilidad de los planes de la Administracin Electoral relativos al nmero previsto de colegios electorales, de miembros de las mesas electorales, de urnas y cabinas de votacin, etc. La Administracin Electoral deber tambin planificar con eficacia la distribucin del material electo 37

ral, y la formacin de los miembros de las mesas electorales. El observador deber en la medida de lo posible asistir a algunas de estas sesiones de formacin. 6.3.El Censo Electoral. El proceso de registro constituye una fase esencial del proceso electoral, ya que un censo defectuoso puede desvirtuar los resultados electorales. Por el contrario, un censo fiable y lo ms inclusivo posible constituye un elemento importante para reforzar la confianza del electorado en el proceso electoral. Por ello ser objeto de una especial atencin por parte de la Misin de Observacin Electoral. El observador deber evaluar el grado de fiabilidad (niveles de incorreccin), transparencia y el carcter inclusivo del censo electoral. ste debe permitir el cumplimiento del principio relativo al carcter universal del sufragio, por lo tanto debe ser lo ms inclusivo posible. El proceso de registro no es observado directamente por el observador, ya que en caso de registro de tipo activo en el que el elector acude a los centros de registro a registrarse, ste se produce 4 5 meses antes de las elecciones. Sin embargo, el observador podr evaluar el nivel de fiabilidad, el carcter inclusivo del censo y el grado de confianza que genera, a travs de las entrevistas mantenidas con todos los actores del proceso electoral, partidos polticos, ciudadanos, electores, organizaciones de derechos humanos, de observacin local y la Administracin Electoral y local. El observador deber estar atento a las mltiples formas de exclusin del voto mediante el proceso censal. En efecto, mediante el proceso de registro se puede excluir deliberadamente del censo, y por lo tanto del proceso electoral, a importantes segmentos incmodos de la poblacin, como minoras o bastiones de la oposicin. Hay muchas formas de privar de su derecho al voto a estos segmentos de la poblacin: 1. En primer lugar, a travs de la elaboracin de un marco legal restrictivo en el que se establecen restricciones injustificadas para el ejercicio del derecho al voto, como las restricciones por razn de raza, gnero, religin, origen tnico, ideologa, dominio de una lengua, nivel de alfabetizacin, o capacidad econmica. El observador prestar especial atencin a las condiciones establecidas por la ley para la adquisicin
38

de la ciudadana. stas en algunos casos se establecen para excluir del derecho al voto a determinados segmentos de la poblacin. 2. Existencia de altos niveles de errores en el censo. 3. Inexistencia o ineficacia de mtodos habilitados para corregir los errores en el censo. Por vas ms sutiles: Por ejemplo, a travs de una distribucin mal intencionada de los centros de registro que dificulta o simplemente imposibilita, el acceso de determinados segmentos de la poblacin a stos. En contextos africanos caracterizados por medios de comunicacin y de transporte muy precarios, ubicar los centros de registro a grandes distancias de determinados ncleos poblacionales, constituye un mtodo eficaz de excluir minoras o poblacin opositora geogrficamente concentrada. A travs de una insuficiente dotacin de material esencial de los centros de registros, que imposibilita el registro de la poblacin que acude a ser registrada. A travs de una falta deliberada de informacin respecto al proceso de registro.

6.4.Registro de partidos y candidatos El principio de universalidad que sustenta el derecho de voto se aplica tambin al derecho a ser candidato, por lo tanto el observador deber: 1. Evaluar si los requisitos exigidos para el registro de partidos y candidatos son injustificadamente restrictivos y destinados a eliminar de la competicin electoral a determinados partidos y candidatos. Aparte de las restricciones discriminatorias relativas a raza, gnero, ideologa, afiliaciones polticas pasadas, religin u origen tnico, los requisitos siguientes son igualmente discriminatorios: Exigencia de depositar cantidades excesivamente elevadas de dinero a fondo perdido, o slo parcialmente reembolsable para poder concurrir a las elecciones. Este requisito discrimina a los candidatos independientes, y a los partidos pequeos con pocos recursos econmicos. Exigencia de contar con oficinas de representacin en todas las regiones del pas. Este requisito impide la presencia en las elecciones de partidos de base regional o tnico, y partidos representantes de minoras.
39

Exigencia de presentar un nmero excesivamente alto de firmas de apoyo para presentarse como partido o candidato en las elecciones. Este requisito reduce las posibilidades de concurrir a las elecciones a partidos pequeos o de reciente creacin, y a candidatos independientes. La exigencia de presentar un elevado nmero de firmas repartidas por igual por todo el territorio nacional es an ms restrictiva. Exigencia de superar un examen lingstico sobre el idioma nacional excesivamente difcil. Este requisito puede discriminar a los partidos y candidatos representantes de minoras. 2. Evaluar si los requisitos establecidos por la ley se aplican de forma imparcial y no discriminatoria. 6.5.Campaa Electoral A.Los observadores debern evaluar si los partidos y candidatos pueden hacer campaa libremente sin obstculos de ninguna clase. Para ello debern: 1. Analizar si el marco legal garantiza el disfrute de los derechos y libertades fundamentales como, libertad de expresin, asociacin y movimiento. Cualquier restriccin de estas libertades afecta directamente la libertad de campaa. 2. Evaluar si el entorno permite a los partidos y candidatos llevar a cabo su campaa libre de violencia, intimidacin y hostigamiento. B.Los observadores debern tambin evaluar si se garantiza una campaa electoral equitativa, en la que ningn partido o candidato se vea favorecido por el mal uso de los recursos estatales o locales, y en la que no se produzcan interferencias indebidas de las autoridades locales, regionales o estatales, en beneficio de determinados candidatos. Para ello debern: 1. Analizar si el marco legal garantiza una campaa equitativa para todos los partidos y candidatos, y prohbe eficazmente las interferencias indebidas de las autoridades locales, estatales o regionales. 2. Evaluar, en caso de que efectivamente se den dichas garantas legales, si se cumple correctamente la legislacin, de forma imparcial, y no discriminatoria. El observador deber prestar atencin entre otros elementos al uso indebido de vehculos estatales, u otros recursos materiales y humanos a favor
40

de los candidatos gubernamentales, a la denegacin injustificada por parte de las autoridades locales o Administracin Electoral del uso de espacios pblicos para la celebracin de mtines de los candidatos y partidos de la oposicin. Si se autoriza el uso de espacios pblicos, debern estar disponibles para todos los partidos y candidatos sobre la misma base. La ley deber establecer claras disposiciones acerca de si los funcionarios y empleados pblicos pueden implicarse en la campaa electoral. En caso de que lo permitiese, stos no debern participar en la campaa electoral ostentando su funcin pblica ya que tiene un efecto perverso sobre el proceso electoral, especialmente en sistemas clientelares. La legislacin sobre financiacin de campaa deber ser clara y aplicarse por igual a todos los partidos y candidatos. 6.6.Campaas de educacin al votante Los observadores debern evaluar la dimensin y eficacia de las campaas de educacin al votante, as como las campaas de educacin cvica, esenciales en contextos de elevado analfabetismo. Las campaas de educacin al votante estn destinadas a informar al votante sobre los requisitos y procedimientos para ser registrado como votante (cmo, dnde registrarse para votar y plazos de verificacin). Tambin informarn sobre cmo y dnde votar el da de las elecciones. La Administracin Estatal es la principal responsable de garantizar que el votante reciba a tiempo una informacin imparcial y objetiva.

41

42

VI. OBSERVADORES DE CORTA DURACIN


1. SALIDA DE LOS OBSERVADORES DE CORTA DURACIN Y LLEGADA AL PAS ANFITRIN Una vez que los OCDs hayan sido seleccionados por el organismo competente, la Oficina de Derechos Humanos del Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperacin convocar una reunin en la cual el representante de la Direccin Poltica correspondiente del Ministerio, y el responsable de observacin electoral de la Oficina, proporcionarn a los observadores informacin sobre el pas de carcter general, poltica y electoral. A su llegada a la capital del pas, en el que se celebran las elecciones, y donde permanecern unos dos das, asistirn a varias sesiones informativas organizadas por los distintos expertos del Core Team. Esto les permitir familiarizarse con la situacin poltica, el marco legal, el sistema electoral, los procedimientos seguidos en la votacin y recuento, y los problemas que puedan aquejar al pro 43

ceso electoral como; censo defectuoso, violencia latente, una Administracin Electoral que goza de poca credibilidad y confianza, un ineficaz sistema de recursos, una insuficiente preparacin de los miembros de la mesa, etc. Se les comunicar el plan de despliegue: regiones a la que se les enva y nombre del compaero con el que harn equipo. Se les presentar, asimismo, al conductor y al intrprete que acompaara al equipo durante su perodo de trabajo. 2.QU FUNCIONES DESARROLLAN LOS OCD? Su principal cometido es el de observar el da de la votacin, recuento y el proceso de agregacin. Transmitirn el resultado de sus observaciones mediante varios formularios. 3.CUESTIONES RELEVANTES PARA LA OBSERVACIN ELECTORAL DE CORTA DURACIN 3.1.Formularios Los formularios recogen los elementos a observar en base a las peculiaridades del proceso electoral y problemas detectados por el Core Team, y los observadores de larga duracin del proceso electoral. Por lo tanto variarn de misin en misin. Constituyen la base sobre la que la misin har el anlisis cuantitativo del desarrollo de la votacin, el recuento y la agregacin de los resultados. Servirn tambin para la valoracin posterior que se har del proceso electoral en su conjunto. Los observadores cumplimentarn cuatro formularios durante la jornada electoral, un formulario de apertura, de votacin, de cierre y recuento y de agregacin. 3.2.Metodologa del despliegue Se despliegan por un periodo de aproximadamente diez das en equipos de dos por todo el territorio nacional, llegando a su rea de responsabilidad unos tres das antes de las elecciones. Su despliegue por toda la geografa nacional permitir al Core Team disponer de una fotografa casi instantnea del desarrollo de la votacin, recuento y agregacin de los resultados.
44

Por otra parte, la presencia masiva de observadores distribuidos por todo el territorio permitir reforzar la transparencia del proceso electoral, y por ende la confianza del electorado en el mismo, lo cual contribuir a aumentar la participacin en las urnas. El factor visibilidad constituye un aspecto importante de la metodologa de la observacin electoral, ya que tiene obvios efectos disuasorios sobre prcticas irregulares, y constituye a la vez una clara seal de apoyo a la sociedad en su esfuerzo por conquistar su derecho a la participacin poltica. 3.3.Capacidad de penetracin de la observacin de corta duracin La eficacia o capacidad de penetracin de la observacin electoral de corta duracin depender de la capacidad de los observadores de entender la realidad, y contexto socio-poltico en el que se desarrolla el proceso electoral y que lo condiciona. Debern por lo tanto, captar la importancia de fenmenos que tienen incidencia directa sobre la integridad del proceso. Debern, por ejemplo, entender que la presencia sistemtica de autoridades locales, o personas identificadas con el poder dominante a las puertas de los colegios tiene un efecto claramente intimidatorio en un contexto cultural donde sigue viva la memoria histrica de un sistema totalitario y de control social rgido. Si no se percibe el impacto de este entorno intimidatorio, su observacin de los aspectos meramente tcnicos puede llevarles a conclusiones errneas. La observacin de corta duracin no se reduce a una fra y automtica recogida de datos tcnicos, de ah su complejidad. 4.ACTIVIDADES DE LOS OCD A SU LLEGADA AL TERRENO. 4.1.Sesin informativa por parte de los observadores de larga duracin A su llegada al terreno los observadores de larga duracin les informarn sobre la realidad socio-poltica, y sobre el desarrollo del proceso electoral en la regin. Se les informar sobre la existencia, en su caso, de problemas relativos al proceso como: compra de votos, falta de independencia e imparcialidad de la Administracin Electoral, mesas electorales slo aparentemente pluripartidistas, prcticas intimidatorios contra votantes y candidatos, registro de votantes defectuoso, voto mltiple, votacin de menores, etc.
45

Esta informacin les ser muy til para centrar su atencin en aquellos aspectos susceptibles de comprometer la integridad de la votacin y el recuento. 4.2.Familiarizacin con el clima poltico del rea de responsabilidad. Los observadores de corta duracin llegan a su rea de responsabilidad unos tres das antes de la eleccin. Durante estos tres das, realizarn una serie de actividades que les permitir familiarizarse con el clima poltico, y problemas propios de su rea de responsabilidad. Si as lo estiman oportuno los OLD les pedirn que asistan al cierre de campaa de los distintos partidos en liza, ya que constituye un buen medio para valorar si existe un clima abierto y de libre discusin entre el electorado, o si por el contrario prevalece un clima de miedo y de reserva. A este fin, podrn preguntar a los electores asistentes si han tenido dificultades de cualquier tipo para acudir al cierre de campaa, observarn el comportamiento de las fuerzas de seguridad ya que una excesiva presencia puede ser indicativa de una voluntad y estrategia intimidatorias. Estarn atentos a los comentarios que los asistentes hagan durante el acto. El recorrido por su rea de responsabilidad les permitir tambin familiarizarse con el paisaje electoral, y valorar el clima poltico imperante en la zona. Estarn atentos a todo tipo de signos externos, como la cantidad y el signo poltico de las pancartas de campaa visibles en espacios pblicos o privados como portales de casa, elementos tiles para valorar el clima poltico. Por ejemplo, la existencia de pancartas y posters de partidos de la oposicin colgados ante portales de casas privadas constituye una clara manifestacin del libre ejercicio a la disensin poltica. 4.3.Entrevistas con los actores electorales. Visibilidad En un contexto de fragilidad institucional donde la Misin ha detectado importantes problemas que afectan al proceso electoral, debern realizar una visita a las autoridades locales, a la Administracin Electoral correspondiente y a los partidos polticos, no slo por cortesa, sino para dar mayor visibilidad posible a la Misin, ya que, esta visibilidad tiene un efecto disuasorio sobre posibles comportamientos y prcticas irregulares. Estas visitas tambin servirn para obtener informacin significativa sobre el desarrollo del proceso electoral, posibles problemas el da de la vota 46

cin, (intimidacin, violencia, problemas con el censo, votacin de menores, fraudulenta distribucin de tarjetas de votacin, centro electoral problemtico), nivel de preparativos de las elecciones y grado de confianza en el proceso electoral por parte de los actores polticos. 4.4.Localizacin y determinacin de la zona a observar. El da anterior a las elecciones, los observadores electorales de corta duracin, desplegados en equipo de dos, identificarn los colegios electorales que visitarn el da de las elecciones estableciendo una ruta. Para esto contarn con el mapa y las direcciones que les hayan proporcionado el equipo de OLD. stos les darn indicaciones generales de la zona a cubrir, o podrn sealarles colegios, o reas concretas donde sospechen que puedan producirse problemas. Se trata de obtener una muestra representativa, y por ello, se procurar mantener un equilibrio entre zonas urbanas y zonas rurales. Es importante no descuidar las zonas rurales ya que, aunque acogen una menor concentracin de poblacin, es all donde se suelen producir las irregularidades ms grave por constituir un entorno ms vulnerable a la presin e intimidacin de los lderes tradicionales y locales, y por ser, as pues, ms propenso a un voto controlado, y de ms difcil acceso a la observacin electoral. Debern seleccionar el colegio electoral de apertura y de cierre. Si se ha detectado la presencia sobre el terreno de otras organizaciones de observacin crebles, se intentar coordinar con ellas la apertura y el cierre para evitar duplicidades. Este mismo da suele producirse la distribucin y recepcin del material electoral en los colegios electorales, lo que les permitir entrevistarse con miembros de la mesa encargados de la recepcin, y conocer el desarrollo de los preparativos y posibles problemas como la falta de material. 5.PREMISAS PARA LA OBSERVACIN DE LA VOTACIN Y EL RECUENTO 5.1.Debern hacer uso del sentido comn y de las informaciones previamente recibidas sobre los condicionamientos socio-polticos-culturales, y el desarrollo del proceso electoral para discernir entre simples deficiencias tcnicas, debidas esencialmente a la falta de experiencia de miembros de la mesa y votantes, sin impacto significativo sobre los resultados, y las irregu 47

laridades graves que desvirtan los resultados y comprometen la integridad del proceso electoral; como por ejemplo, dejar votar a personas sin derecho a voto, no dejar votar electores inscritos en el censo, permitir la votacin mltiple, no garantizar el secreto del voto en un entorno marcadamente intimidatorio. 5.2.Nunca debern hablar con la prensa para valorar el proceso, ya que slo disponen de una visin parcial del mismo, y prejuzgan de este modo de la valoracin final del Core Team, ver Cdigo de Conducta. 5.3.En contextos de fragilidad democrtica, marco habitual de la observacin electoral, el proceso de apertura, votacin, recuento y agregacin de los resultados se halla protegido por toda una serie de salvaguardias que pretenden garantizar la limpieza del proceso electoral. El observador deber estar por lo tanto muy atento a estas salvaguardias: sellado de la urna, contabilizacin de las papeletas recibidas, autentificacin de las papeletas con un sello o firma de un miembro de la mesa antes de entregarla al votante, firma del censo por el votante, uso obligatorio de la cabina de votacin, uso de la tinta indeleble. stas son salvaguardias que pretenden evitar graves irregularidades como relleno de urnas, voto mltiple, manipulacin de los resultados y violacin del secreto del voto en contextos marcadamente intimidatorios. 6.APERTURA DE LOS COLEGIOS Los observadores llegarn al primer colegio una hora antes de la apertura, para observar los preparativos para la apertura de la votacin, y constitucin de la mesa. Tendrn que cumplimentar un formulario de apertura. a En primer lugar, debern observar si la mesa se ha constituido de acuerdo con los procedimientos previstos por la ley, relativos a la acreditacin de los miembros de la mesa y al qurum necesario para la constitucin de la misma. b En esta fase, los miembros de la mesa debidamente acreditados debern contar el nmero de papeletas, y anotarlas en el acta de apertura, operacin necesaria para la posterior conciliacin entre votos emitidos y papeletas recibidas.
48

c El observador deber anotar el nmero de papeletas recibidas para que as la misin pueda rastrear cualquier discrepancia entre el nmero de papeletas recibidas, y el nmero de votos emitidos. d Las papeletas recibidas deben superar slo ligeramente el nmero de votantes inscritos para evitar cualquier riesgo de relleno de urnas, Ballot stuffing. Una discrepancia considerable entre el nmero de votantes inscritos y las papeletas recibidas, puede ser indicativa de una estrategia fraudulenta. e El sellado de la urna constituye un momento importante de los preparativos para la apertura. El observador deber estar atento a que el Presidente de la mesa ensee la urna a todos los presentes antes de sellarla. Se sella la urna con uno o varios sellos de plsticos, cuyo nmero de serie es anotado por observadores y representantes de partidos. Esto les permitir comprobar al cierre que no ha habido manipulacin de la urna. Es por lo tanto importante observar si se cumplen estos procedimientos, y no se obstaculiza por parte de los miembros de la mesa la anotacin del nmero de sello. f La presencia de observadores domsticos y representantes, constituye una garanta de la transparencia del proceso, por lo tanto constituye un elemento esencial a observar. g La falta de material sensible, urna, papeletas, censo y tinta indeleble, puede privar del derecho al voto a numerosos votantes, o comprometer la transparencia del proceso, por lo que deber ser anotado por los OCD. Puede responder a una deficiencia tcnica, o a una estrategia deliberada. h Los observadores debern anotar la hora de apertura. Si por ejemplo, los colegios electorales abren con dos o tres horas de retraso con respecto a la hora prevista, sin que por ello se aplace la hora de cierre en la misma proporcin. De esta forma numerosos electores pueden verse privados de su derecho a votar. 7.OBSERVACIN MLTIPLE DE COLEGIOS ELECTORALES. Los Observadores de corta duracin visitarn tras la apertura, un promedio de entre 10 y 15 colegios electorales. Permanecern un promedio de 30 minutos o ms si lo estiman necesario, en el caso de que se estn produciendo problemas.
4

49

7.1.Metodologa Se presentarn a los miembros de la mesa. Sin obstaculizar el desarrollo de la votacin, solicitarn al presidente de la mesa algunos datos como numero de votantes registrados, votos emitidos, nmero de votantes no encontrados en el censo, nmero de papeleteas, etc. Anotarn cualquier irregularidad o deficiencia, y con una actitud constructiva podrn llamar la atencin de los miembros de la mesa sobre esta irregularidad o deficiencia, de forma educada, sin imposiciones y sin obstaculizar el proceso de votacin. Se acercarn a los representantes de los partidos y observadores locales, para obtener su impresin sobre el desarrollo de la votacin en colegio electoral. Anotarn cualquier reclamacin o denuncia sobre irregularidades que le presenten los observadores locales, representantes de partidos o los votantes. Si pueden, intentarn contrastarla. Por ejemplo, si algn representante les informa que en un determinado colegio se est intimidando, o menores estn votando, procurarn acudir al colegio electoral en cuestin para contrastar la informacin pero tambin para producir un efecto disuasorio, siempre y cuando las consideraciones sobre la seguridad lo permitan. Podrn hablar con los votantes para evaluar su confianza en el proceso electoral, preguntarles si creen que su voto fue secreto cuando no se dieron las condiciones para asegurar un voto secreto Podrn valorar la eficacia de las campaas de educacin al votante, preguntndoles si estaban familiarizados con los procedimientos de la votacin, y si recibieron suficiente informacin para decidir su opcin. Los formularios variarn de misin en misin. Si el proceso de registro de los votantes ha sido cuestionado por los interlocutores, su grado de inclusin ser objeto de especial atencin el da de la votacin. El da de las elecciones se pone a prueba la calidad del censo. 7.2.Entorno El primer elemento que deben observar los observadores de corta duracin es el entorno en el que se produce la votacin. Debern detectar cualquier actividad intimidatoria dirigida hacia los votantes en las inmediaciones de los recintos electorales.
50

No es fcil ya que muchas veces la intimidacin se ejerce de forma indirecta, y es difcilmente perceptible por el observador. La presencia de autoridades locales, o lderes tradicionales en el recinto electoral, puede constituir una forma de intimidacin en un entorno rural, donde esas autoridades ejercen una importante influencia. Los OCD debern prestar especial atencin a la presencia y comportamiento de las fuerzas de seguridad. Una presencia excesiva de fuerzas de seguridad tambin puede producir un efecto intimidatorio, sobretodo si se da en un contexto de post conflicto en zonas de ex rebeldes. Los observadores prestarn atencin a la presencia o ausencia de material de campaa, o si se est desarrollando alguna actividad de campaa en violacin de la normativa electoral. 7.3.Observacin dentro del colegio electoral 7.3.1.Qu observar? Los observadores debern evaluar si se respetan los procedimientos electorales. Los aspectos importantes que deben ser observados son los siguientes: Si se detecta la presencia de personas no autorizadas dentro del recinto electoral, autoridades locales, lderes tradicionales, etc. stas tienen capacidad de ejercer cierta intimidacin sobre los votantes, sobretodo en sociedades de tipo comunitario o con un pasado de control social y poltico rgido. Si se identifica correctamente a los votantes con la documentacin adecuada, DNI o tarjeta de votacin, o cualquier otro documento previsto por la ley. Si se verifica que el dedo no tiene tinta antes de dejarle votar. Si se deja votar slo a los que figuran en el censo. Si se detecta si muchas personas no han podido votar por no estar en el censo. Si no se observa directamente, se preguntar al presidente de la mesa sobre el nmero de personas que no pudieron votar por no encontrarse en el censo. Este elemento se incluye en el cuestionario para evaluar la dimensin de las posibles deficiencias del registro, y su impacto en el proceso electoral. Se puede comprometer la integridad del proceso, excluyendo del censo segmentos de la poblacin. Si se observa casos de suplantacin, es decir si personas registradas no han podido votar porque ya otros haban votado en su lugar.
51

Si se produce un uso fraudulento de tarjetas de votacin. Si existen indicios de voto mltiple. La posibilidad de registrarse en una lista adicional el da de la votacin junto al no uso de la tinte indeleble puede facilitar el voto mltiple. Si se garantiza y respeta el secreto del voto mediante la correcta colocacin, y uso de las cabinas de votacin. En un contexto intimidatorio, o en un contexto de gran pobreza en el que la prctica de la compra del voto est muy extendida, garantizar el secreto del voto constituye una salvaguardia importante. Si los miembros de la mesa actan de forma imparcial, neutral y profesional sin influir en el votante. Si la composicin multipartidista de las mesas electorales es real o falaz. Si se asiste correctamente a las personas que necesitan asistencia, analfabetos, personas con discapacidad, etc. Si se observa voto familiar. El derecho al sufragio prescribe un voto en secreto y en persona. Este tipo de voto suele comprometer el derecho al voto de las mujeres. Si las papeletas son firmadas o selladas antes de entregarlas. Se debe cumplir con ese procedimiento para evitar el uso fraudulento de papeletas para rellenar urnas. Si los votantes firman el registro tras votar. Este procedimiento constituye una salvaguardia contra el voto mltiple. Si se aplica la tinta indeleble, garanta contra el voto mltiple. Si observadores locales y representantes de partido estn presentes en los colegios electorales. Su presencia constituye una garanta para la transparencia del proceso. La posible presencia de observadores electorales locales y representantes falsos de partidos polticos, responde a la voluntad de mantener ante los votantes y la Comunidad Internacional la falacia de un control plural del proceso electoral. Si se producen actos intimidatorios o de violencia, contra los votantes o personal electoral, tanto en las inmediaciones de los centros electorales como dentro de los colegios electorales. Si existen colegios electorales fantasmas. Son Colegios electorales registrados oficialmente como tales, en los que ninguna votacin tiene lugar, pero para los cuales se publican resultados. Se deber evaluar el nivel de entendimiento de los procedimientos, por parte de los votantes en contextos de alta tasa de analfabetismo, al igual que la preparacin de los miembros de la mesa para acometer sus funciones.
52

En caso de que la ley electoral contemple la constitucin de closed polling stations, los observadores debern visitar estos colegios electorales especiales. Son universidades, prisiones, hospitales o cuarteles convertidos en lugar de votacin, exclusivamente para los trabajadores de estas instituciones. Estos colegios especiales constituyen un entorno propicio a la intimidacin, por la dependencia orgnica y econmica de sus trabajadores/votantes, lo que compromete la libertad de voto.

7.3.2.Cmo valorar el proceso de votacin? La observacin de corta duracin no debe reducirse a una simple y fra recogida de datos tcnico. El observador debe tener en cuenta la realidad del pas, condiciones materiales y factores culturales, para evaluar en su conjunto el proceso de votacin y recuento. Las votaciones tienen lugar algunas veces en condiciones materiales muy precarias. Si las deficiencias observadas no comprometen el principio de votacin libre, la valoracin general podr ser relativamente positiva. 8CIERRE Y RECUENTO 8.1.Qu hay que observar en el cierre? Los observadores deben valorar: si el cierre se realiza de acuerdo con los procedimientos establecidos en la ley. Si se deja votar a los votantes que estn en la cola a la hora del cierre de la votacin. Si se procede a contar el nmero de papeletas entregadas, daadas y no usadas, y se refleja correctamente en las actas estas operaciones, imprescindibles para las posteriores operaciones de conciliacin que avalan la integridad del proceso. Si se conservan las papeletas no usadas y daadas en sobres previstos a tal efecto, para evitar un uso fraudulento de estas papeletas.

8.2.Qu hay que observar en el recuento? En situaciones de fragilidad institucional, puede producirse todo tipo de manipulaciones y falsificaciones en esta fase. Los observadores evaluarn la transparencia del recuento y el cumplimiento de los procedimientos. En concreto observarn:
53

Si el sello de la urna es el mismo que fue anotado por la maana por observadores y representantes de los partidos, lo que certifica que la urna no ha sido manipulada. Si se permite la presencia de observadores electorales y representantes de los partidos y candidatos independientes. Si se les permite colocarse a una distancia adecuada para presenciar, sin dificultades, el proceso de recuento en su integridad. Si se muestra de forma visible a todos los presentes las papeletas. Si se invalida de forma arbitraria, afectando sistemticamente algn partido en concreto. El abanico de votos invlidos considerado normal se sita entre un 1% y 5%, incluso en contextos de elevado analfabetismo. Si se guardan los votos invlidos para una posible revisin posterior. Si no hubo discrepancias significativas en las operaciones de conciliacin; nmero de votos emitidos, nmero de papeletas recibidas y nmero de votantes registrados. Si se entrega una copia del acta de los resultados a representantes de partidos y observadores, como medida de garanta contra la posterior manipulacin de resultados. Si se expone el acta de los resultados a la puerta del colegio electoral. Esta medida constituye una importante salvaguardia que garantiza la transparencia del proceso de recuento, al proporcionar informacin vital a partidos y votantes para verificar los resultados, y por lo tanto permitir la deteccin de posteriores manipulaciones y documentar los contenciosos electorales.

Algunas veces se decide no realizar el recuento en el colegio sino a un nivel superior, en el que se mezclan las papeletas de varios colegios electorales, para dar garanta al electorado de comunidades pequeas de que su voto no podr ser rastreado, y de que por lo tanto no podrn ser objeto de ningn tipo de represalias. En sociedades con una memoria viva de un reciente pasado totalitario, esta medida infunde confianza en el electorado. 9.AGREGACIN DE LOS RESULTADOS. Tras el recuento, los observadores debern acompaar al presidente de la mesa del colegio electoral con las urnas, hasta las instituciones encargadas de la recogida y agregacin de los resultados a nivel regional. Deben observar el proceso de agregacin en su integridad, y evaluar su transparen 54

cia, y si se desarrolla conforme a la normativa electoral. Debern estar preparados para trabajar hasta altas horas de la madrugada. Existe en esta fase un alto riesgo de manipulacin y falsificacin de los resultados. Pueden detectarse a este nivel importantes discrepancias entre los resultados publicados a nivel de los colegios electorales, y los resultados anunciados en la fase de agregacin para estos mismos colegios electorales. 10.TRANSMISIN DE LOS RESULTADOS DE LA OBSERVACIN Los observadores de corta duracin debern durante el da de la votacin transmitir los resultados de sus observaciones, recogidos en los distintos formularios, a sus observadores de larga duracin quienes a su vez los transmitirn al Core Team. Debern asimismo respetar el esquema de transmisin preestablecido por el equipo de observadores de larga duracin. Por lo general la transmisin se har por va telefnica (mvil o satlite en caso de falta de cobertura). Se transmitirn los datos relativos a la apertura entre las 9 y las 10 horas de la maana. Los datos relativos a la observacin de la votacin en los distintos colegios electorales, se transmitirn justo despus de la finalizacin de la jornada electoral. Tras finalizar el recuento, los observadores de corta duracin transmitirn los datos relativos al cierre y recuento. En caso de que deban observar el proceso de agregacin, transmitirn la informacin requerida al finalizar dicho proceso. 11.FORMULARIOS

55

56

57

58

59

60

61

62

63

64

65

66

67

68

VII. PROCESO DE SELECCIN DE LOS OBSERVADORES ELECTORALES ESPAOLES


1.CONSIDERACIONES GENERALES La Oficina de Derechos Humanos del Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperacin es la unidad encargada de seleccionar a los observadores electorales espaoles de corta y larga duracin, tanto en el mbito de la OSCE como el de la UE. En ambos casos, utiliza los criterios siguientes para la seleccin de los observadores: deben tener experiencia previa en observacin electoral internacional, o, deben haber participado en uno de los cursos de capacitacin para observadores de corta duracin, que la Oficina de Derechos Humanos realiza dos veces al ao en la Escuela Diplomtica, o en otros centros de la geografa nacional.
69

Para poder optar a ser observador de larga duracin, se exige experiencia previa en observacin electoral de larga duracin, o haber acumulado varias experiencias en observacin de corta duracin. Para ser observador de corta duracin se requiere experiencia previa, o haber participado en los cursos mencionados. Telfono y direccin de contacto de la Oficina de Derechos Humanos con respecto a la observacin electoral: 913798572, observacionelectoral@maec.es 2.PROCESO DE SELECCIN DE LOS OBSERVADORES ESPAOLES EN EL MBITO DE LA OSCE En primer lugar la Oficina de Derechos Humanos recibe una Nota, de la Oficina para las Instituciones Democrticas y los Derechos Humanos (ODIHR en sus siglas inglesas, OIDDH en sus siglas espaolas), en la que informa a los Estados Miembros del despliegue de una misin de observacin electoral para unas elecciones determinadas, y el nmero total de observadores requeridos. En esta misma Nota la OIDDH solicita a los Estados Miembros que aporten un nmero indeterminado de observadores de larga y corta duracin. Tras la recepcin de esta Nota, la Oficina de Derechos Humanos en coordinacin con la Direccin Poltica correspondiente, decidir la oportunidad poltica de mandar observadores electorales espaoles, y el nmero de observadores a desplegar. En caso afirmativo, enviar por correo electrnico a los observadores que estn incluidos en una base de datos, una convocatoria en la que solicita a las personas interesadas que manden su CV, y proceder a la seleccin de los observadores de larga y corta duracin. Una vez la seleccin finalizada, remitir los nombres de los observadores seleccionados a la OIDDH. La Secretara de Estado de Asuntos Exteriores del Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperacin sufraga la totalidad de los gastos derivados de la participacin de los observadores espaoles en las misiones de observacin electoral de la OSCE. 3.PROCESOS DE SELECCIN DE LOS OBSERVADORES ESPAOLES EN EL MBITO DE LA UE Aparte de cumplir con uno de los dos criterios mencionados al principio de este captulo, los observadores espaoles que quieran participar en las misiones de observacin de la UE, debern previamente incluir su CV en el
70

Roster de observadores que la UE tiene habilitado a este fin y cuya direccin es la siguiente: http://ec.europa.eu/comm/europeaid/observer/index_en.htm Como primer paso, la Comisin enva a la Oficina de Derechos Humanos una Nota, en la que informa del despliegue de una misin de observacin electoral a unas elecciones determinadas, y en la que solicita a cada Estado Miembro que le remita una preseleccin de un nmero determinado de observadores de larga y corta duracin. Tras la recepcin de esta Nota, la Oficina enva por correo electrnico a los observadores que tiene incluidos en una base de datos, una convocatoria en la que solicita a las personas interesadas que enven su CV. Posteriormente, proceder a la seleccin de las candidaturas que presentar a la Comisin. sta har una seleccin final sobre las candidaturas presentadas. La UE sufraga la totalidad de los gastos derivada de la participacin de los observadores en sus misiones de observacin electoral. Las personas incluidas en la base de datos de la Oficina de derechos Humanos, son los observadores que cuentan con experiencia previa, y los participantes a los cursos de capacitacin sobre observacin electoral de corta duracin organizados por la Oficina de Derechos Humanos en colaboracin con la Escuela Diplomtica u otros organismos.

71

72

VIII. CDIGO DE CONDUCTA


Todas las organizaciones intergubernamentales, y organizaciones internacionales no gubernamentales de observacin electoral, han ido adoptando sus propios cdigos de conducta, vinculantes para los miembros de las misiones de observacin electoral internacional. No obstante, estos distintos cdigos de conducta se estructuran alrededor de los siguientes principios bsicos comunes: respeto a la soberana del pas anfitrin, respeto a las leyes del pas anfitrin, imparcialidad de los observadores, no interferencia en el proceso electoral, transparencia y profesionalismo en la ejecucin de sus funciones, contacto reglado con los medios de comunicacin, derechos y obligaciones de los observadores ante la misin de observacin electoral. En un esfuerzo de homogeneizar los distintos cdigos de conducta operativos en las diferentes organizaciones de observacin electoral internacional, se adopt en octubre del 2005 bajo los auspicios de Naciones Unidas un Cdigo de Conducta para los Observadores Electorales Internacionales,
73

junto con una Declaracin de Principios para la Observacin Electoral Internacional. Ambos documentos fueron suscritos por 21 organizaciones internacionales de observacin electoral, entre las que destacan, la Comisin Europea, la OSCE, Naciones Unidas, la Organizacin de Estados Americanos, la Unin Africana, el Consejo de Europa, la Unin Interparlamentaria, el Secretariado de la Commonwealth, el Centro Carter, IFES, Asian Network for Free Elections y otras diez ms. Se reproduce a continuacin el citado Cdigo de Conducta para Observadores Electorales Internacionales. La observacin electoral internacional est ampliamente aceptada en todo el mundo. Se realiza por organizaciones intergubernamentales, y organizaciones y asociaciones internacionales no gubernamentales, con el fin de proporcionar una evaluacin imparcial y precisa de la naturaleza del proceso electoral, para beneficio, de la poblacin del pas en el que se celebra la eleccin, y de la Comunidad Internacional. Por lo tanto, el xito de la misma depende de la capacidad de garantizar la integridad de la observacin electoral internacional, y de todos aquellos que forman parte de esa misin de observacin electoral internacional, incluyendo los observadores de corta y larga duracin, los miembros de las delegaciones de evaluacin, los expertos y los jefes de misin, los cuales deben suscribir y respetar este Cdigo de Conducta. Respetar la soberana y los Derechos Humanos Internacionales Las elecciones constituyen una expresin de la soberana que pertenece al pueblo de un pas, cuya libre expresin de la voluntad proporciona la base de la autoridad y legitimidad del gobierno. El derecho de los ciudadanos a votar, y ser elegidos, en elecciones peridicas y autnticas, constituyen derechos humanos internacionalmente reconocidos, y requieren el ejercicio de un nmero de derechos y libertades fundamentales. Los observadores electorales deben respetar la soberana del pas anfitrin, as como los derechos y libertades de su pueblo. Respetar las Leyes del Pas y de la Autoridad de los Organismos Electorales Los observadores deben respetar les leyes del pas anfitrin, y la autoridad de los organismos encargados de administrar el proceso electoral. Los observadores deben respetar cualquier instruccin legal procedente de las
74

autoridades gubernamentales, electorales y de las fuerzas de seguridad del pas. Los observadores deben tambin mantener una actitud respetuosa hacia los funcionarios de la administracin electoral, y otras autoridades nacionales. Los observadores deben tomar nota de si las leyes, regulaciones o las acciones de los funcionarios electorales y/o estatales restringen y obstaculizan indebidamente el ejercicio de los derechos electorales garantizados por la ley, la constitucin, o por instrumentos internacionales aplicables. Respetar la integridad de la Misin de Observacin Electoral Internacional Los observadores deben respetar y proteger la integridad de la misin de observacin electoral internacional. Ello implica, respetar este Cdigo de Conducta, cualquier instruccin escrita (como los trminos de referencia, directrices, y reglas), y cualquier instruccin verbal procedente del equipo dirigente de la misin de observacin. Los Observadores deben: asistir a todos los briefings, sesiones de formacin, y debriefings exigidos por la misin de observacin; familiarizarse con la ley electoral, regulaciones y otras leyes pertinentes indicadas por la misin de observacin; y observar cuidadosamente las metodologas empleadas por la misin de observacin. Los observadores deben tambin informar al equipo dirigente de la misin de observacin, acerca de cualquier conflicto de intereses que puedan tener y sobre cualquier comportamiento impropio de otros observadores que forman parte de la misin. Mantener en todo momento una estricta imparcialidad poltica Los observadores deben mantener en todo momento, una estricta imparcialidad poltica, incluso en su tiempo de ocio en el pas anfitrin. No deben expresar ni mostrar ningn sesgo, o preferencia, con respecto a las autoridades nacionales, partidos polticos, candidatos, cuestiones sometidas a referndum, o en relacin a cualquier tema polmico del proceso electoral. Los observadores tampoco deben llevar a cabo, ninguna actividad que pudiera razonablemente percibirse como una actividad que favorece, o proporciona un beneficio partidista, a cualquier contendiente poltico en el pas anfitrin, tales como llevar o exhibir smbolos partidista, colores, banderolas o aceptar cualquier objeto de valor de los contendientes polticos.
75

No obstaculizar los Procesos Electorales Los observadores no deben obstaculizar ningn aspecto del proceso electoral, incluyendo procesos preelectorales, la votacin, el recuento y la agregacin de los resultados y los procesos surgidos en el periodo postelectoral. Los observadores pueden en el mismo momento llamar la atencin del personal electoral sobre irregularidades, fraude o problemas significativos observados, y deben hacerlo sin obstaculizar el proceso. Los observadores pueden plantear preguntas al personal electoral, a los representantes de los partidos y otros observadores dentro de los colegios electorales, y pueden contestar a las preguntas sobre su propia actividad, siempre y cuando, los observadores no obstaculicen el proceso electoral. Al contestar a las preguntas, los observadores no deberan intentar dirigir el proceso electoral. Los observadores pueden preguntar a los votantes y contestar preguntas de los votantes, pero no pueden pedirles que desvelen por quin o qu partido, o por que opcin del referndum votaron. Proporcionar una identificacin adecuada Los observadores deben mostrar la identificacin proporcionada por la misin de observacin electoral, as como la identificacin exigida por las autoridades nacionales, y deben presentarla al personal electoral y otras autoridades nacionales a requerimiento suyo. Mantener la precisin de las observaciones y el profesionalismo al extraer conclusiones Los observadores deben asegurarse de que todas sus observaciones son precisas. Las observaciones deben ser exhaustivas, sealando tanto los factores positivos como los negativos, distinguiendo entre los factores significativos e insignificantes, e identificando pautas que podran tener un impacto importante sobre la integridad del proceso electoral. Los juicios de los observadores deben basarse sobre el ms alto nivel de precisin en la informacin, y de imparcialidad en el anlisis, distinguiendo entre los factores subjetivos y la evidencia objetiva. Los observadores deben basar sus conclusiones sobre hechos comprobados, y no deben sacar conclusiones de forma prematura. Los observadores deben tambin mantener un registro bien documentado, de dnde observaron, de las observaciones realizadas
76

y cualquier otra informacin pertinente requerida por la misin de observacin, y deben devolver esta documentacin a la misin. Abstenerse de hacer comentarios al pblico o los Medios de Comunicacin antes de que la Misin se pronuncie Los observadores deben abstenerse de hacer cualquier comentario sobre sus observaciones o conclusiones a los medios de comunicacin, o los miembros del pblico, antes de que la misin de observacin realice una declaracin, a menos que especficamente se le instruya lo contrario, por parte del equipo dirigente de la misin de observacin. Los observadores pueden explicar la naturaleza de la misin de observacin, de sus actividades y otros asuntos que la misin de observacin estime adecuados, y deberan remitir a los medios de comunicacin u otras personas interesadas, a las personas designadas por la misin de observacin electoral. Cooperar con otros Observadores Electorales Los observadores deben ser conscientes de la presencia de otras misiones de observacin electoral, tanto internacionales como locales, y cooperar con ellos siguiendo las instrucciones del equipo dirigente de la misin de observacin electoral. Mantener un comportamiento personal adecuado Los observadores deben mantener un comportamiento personal adecuado y respetar otros comportamientos, mostrar sensibilidad por las culturas y costumbres del pas anfitrin, ejercer el sentido comn en las relaciones interpersonales, y observar en todo momento el nivel ms alto de conducta profesional, inclusive en el tiempo libre. Violaciones de este Cdigo de Conducta En caso de sospecha sobre la violacin de este Cdigo de Conducta, la misin de observacin electoral llevar a cabo una investigacin al respecto. Si se comprueba que se ha producido una violacin grave, se podr retirar la acreditacin al observador implicado o despedirle de la misin de observacin. Tales decisiones son de la exclusiva competencia del equipo dirigente de la misin de observacin electoral.
77

Compromiso de observancia de este Cdigo de Conducta Cada persona que participa en una misin de observacin electoral debe leer y entender este Cdigo de Conducta, y debe firmar una declaracin comprometindose a observarlo.

78

ANEXOS

79

80

Anexo 1

DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES FOR INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVATION


and

CODE OF CONDUCT FOR INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVERS

81

82

Commemorated October 27, 2005, at the United Nations, New York DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES FOR INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVATION and CODE OF CONDUCT FOR INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVERS Commemorated October 27, 2005, at the United Nations, New York Endorsing Organizations as of October 24, 2005: African Union Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) The Carter Center Center for Electoral Promotion and Assistance (CAPEL) Commonwealth Secretariat Council of Europe European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) Council of Europe - Parliamentary Assembly Electoral Institute of Southern Africa (EISA) European Commission European Network of Election Monitoring Organizations (ENEMO) Electoral Reform International Services (ERIS) IFES International IDEA Inter-Parliamentary Union International Republican Institute (IRI) National Democratic Institute (NDI) Organization of American States (OAS) Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights
83

(OSCE/ODIHR) Pacific Islands, Australia & New Zealand Electoral Administrators' Association (PIANZEA) Pacific Island Forum United Nations This Declaration and the accompanying Code of Conduct for International Election Observers remain open for endorsement by other intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations. Endorsements should be recorded with the United Nations Electoral Assistance Division. DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES FOR INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVATION October 27, 2005 Genuine democratic elections are an expression of sovereignty, which belongs to the people of a country, the free expression of whose will provides the basis for the authority and legitimacy of government. The rights of citizens to vote and to be elected at periodic, genuine democratic elections are internationally recognized human rights. Genuine democratic elections serve to resolve peacefully the competition for political power within a country and thus are central to the maintenance of peace and stability. Where governments are legitimized through genuine democratic elections, the scope for nondemocratic challenges to power is reduced. Genuine democratic elections are a requisite condition for democratic governance, because they are the vehicle through which the people of a country freely express their will, on a basis established by law, as to who shall have the legitimacy to govern in their name and in their interests. Achieving genuine democratic elections is a part of establishing broader processes and institutions of democratic governance. Therefore, while all election processes should reflect universal principles for genuine democratic elections, no election can be separated from the political, cultural and historical context in which it takes place. Genuine democratic elections cannot be achieved unless a wide range of other human rights and fundamental freedoms can be exercised on
84

an ongoing basis without discrimination based on race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status, including among others disabilities, and without arbitrary and unreasonable restrictions. They, like other human rights and democracy more broadly, cannot be achieved without the protections of the rule of law. These precepts are recognized by human rights and other international instruments and by the documents of numerous intergovernmental organizations. Achieving genuine democratic elections therefore has become a matter of concern for international organizations, just as it is the concern of national institutions, political competitors, citizens and their civic organizations. International election observation expresses the interest of the international community in the achievement of democratic elections, as part of democratic development, including respect for human rights and the rule of law. International election observation, which focuses on civil and political rights, is part of international human rights monitoring and must be conducted on the basis of the highest standards for impartiality concerning national political competitors and must be free from any bilateral or multilateral considerations that could conflict with impartiality. It assesses election processes in accordance with international principles for genuine democratic elections and domestic law, while recognizing that it is the people of a country who ultimately determine credibility and legitimacy of an election process. International election observation has the potential to enhance the integrity of election processes, by deterring and exposing irregularities and fraud and by providing recommendations for improving electoral processes. It can promote public confidence, as warranted, promote electoral participation and mitigate the potential for election-related conflict. It also serves to enhance international understanding through the sharing of experiences and information about democratic development. International election observation has become widely accepted around the world and plays an important role in providing accurate and impartial assessments about the nature of electoral processes. Accurate and impartial international election observation requires credible methodologies and cooperation with national authorities, the national political competitors (political parties, candidates and supporters of positions on referenda), domestic election monitoring organizations and other credible international election observer organizations, among others.
85

The intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations endorsing this Declaration and the accompanying Code of Conduct for International Election Observers therefore have joined to declare: 1 Genuine democratic elections are an expression of sovereignty, which belongs to the people of a country, the free expression of whose will provides the basis for the authority and legitimacy of government. The rights of citizens to vote and to be elected at periodic, genuine democratic elections are internationally recognized human rights. Genuine democratic elections are central for maintaining peace and stability, and they provide the mandate for democratic governance. 2 In accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant for Civil and Political Rights and other international instruments, everyone has the right and must be provided with the opportunity to participate in the government and public affairs of his or her country, without any discrimination prohibited by international human rights principles and without any unreasonable restrictions. This right can be exercised directly, by participating in referenda, standing for elected office and by other means, or can be exercised through freely chosen representatives. 3 The will of the people of a country is the basis for the authority of government, and that will must be determined through genuine periodic elections, which guarantee the right and opportunity to vote freely and to be elected fairly through universal and equal suffrage by secret balloting or equivalent free voting procedures, the results of which are accurately counted, announced and respected. A significant number of rights and freedoms, processes,
86

laws and institutions are therefore involved in achieving genuine democratic elections. 4 International election observation is: the systematic, comprehensive and accurate gathering of information concerning the laws, processes and institutions related to the conduct of elections and other factors concerning the overall electoral environment; the impartial and professional analysis of such information; and the drawing of conclusions about the character of electoral processes based on the highest standards for accuracy of information and impartiality of analysis. International election observation should, when possible, offer recommendations for improving the integrity and effectiveness of electoral and related processes, while not interfering in and thus hindering such processes. International election observation missions are: organized efforts of intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations and associations to conduct international election observation. 5 International election observation evaluates pre-election, election-day and post-election periods through comprehensive, long-term observation, employing a variety of techniques. As part of these efforts, specialized observation missions may examine limited pre-election or post-election issues and specific processes (such as, delimitation of election districts, voter registration, use of electronic technologies and functioning of electoral complaint mechanisms). Stand-alone, specialized observation missions may also be employed, as long as such missions make clear public statements that their activities and conclusions are limited in scope and that they draw no conclusions about the overall election process based on such limited activities. All observer missions must make concerted efforts to place the election day into its context and not to over-emphasize the importance of election day observations. International election observation examines conditions relating to the right to vote and to be elected, including, among other things, discrimination or other obstacles that hinder
87

participation in electoral processes based on political or other opinion, gender, race, colour, ethnicity, language, religion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status, such as physical disabilities. The findings of international election observation missions provide a factual common point of reference for all persons interested in the elections, including the political competitors. This can be particularly valuable in the context of disputed elections, where impartial and accurate findings can help to mitigate the potential for conflicts. 6 International election observation is conducted for the benefit of the people of the country holding the elections and for the benefit of the international community. It is process oriented, not concerned with any particular electoral result, and is concerned with results only to the degree that they are reported honestly and accurately in a transparent and timely manner. No one should be allowed to be a member of an international election observer mission unless that person is free from any political, economic or other conflicts of interest that would interfere with conducting observations accurately and impartially and/or drawing conclusions about the character of the election process accurately and impartially. These criteria must be met effectively over extended periods by long-term observers, as well as during the more limited periods of election day observation, each of which periods present specific challenges for independent and impartial analysis. International election observation missions should not accept funding or infrastructural support from the government whose elections are being observed, as it may raise a significant conflict of interest and undermine confidence in the integrity of the mission's findings. International election observation delegations should be prepared to disclose the sources of their funding upon appropriate and reasonable requests. 7 International election observation missions are expected to issue timely, accurate and impartial statements to the public (including providing copies to electoral authorities and other appropriate national entities), presenting their findings, conclusions and any appropriate recommendations they determine could help improve election related processes. Missions should announce publicly their presence in a country, including the mission's mandate, composition and duration, make periodic reports as warranted and issue a preliminary postelection statement of findings and a final report upon the conclusion of the
88

election process. International election observation missions may also conduct private meetings with those concerned with organizing genuine democratic elections in a country to discuss the mission's findings, conclusions and recommendations. International election observation missions may also report to their respective intergovernmental or international nongovernmental organizations. 8 The organizations that endorse this Declaration and the accompanying Code of Conduct for International Election Observers pledge to cooperate with each other in conducting international election observation missions. International election observation can be conducted, for example, by: individual international election observer missions; ad hoc joint international election observation missions; or coordinated international election observation missions. In all circumstances, the endorsing organizations pledge to work together to maximize the contribution of their international election observation missions. 9 International election observation must be conducted with respect for the sovereignty of the country holding elections and with respect for the human rights of the people of the country. International election observation missions must respect the laws of the host country, as well as national authorities, including electoral bodies, and act in a manner that is consistent with respecting and promoting human rights and fundamental freedoms. 10 International election observation missions must actively seek cooperation with host country electoral authorities and must not obstruct the election process. 11 decision by any organization to organize an international election observation mission or to explore the possibility of organizing an observation mission does not imply that the organization necessarily deems the election process in the country holding the elections to be credible. An organization should not send an international election observation mission to a country under conditions that make it likely that its presence will be interpreted as giving legitimacy to a clearly undemocratic electoral process, and international election observation missions in any such circumstance should make public statements to ensure that their presence does not imply such legitimacy.
89

12 In order for an international election observation mission to effectively and credibly conduct its work basic conditions must be met. An international election observation mission therefore should not be organized unless the country holding the election takes the following actions: a Issues an invitation or otherwise indicates its willingness to accept international election observation missions in accordance with each organization's requirements sufficiently in advance of elections to allow analysis of all of the processes that are important to organizing genuine democratic elections; b Guarantees unimpeded access of the international election observer mission to all stages of the election process and all election technologies, including electronic technologies and the certification processes for electronic voting and other technologies, without requiring election observation missions to enter into confidentiality or other nondisclosure agreements concerning technologies or election processes, and recognizes that international election observation missions may not certify technologies as acceptable; c Guarantees unimpeded access to all persons concerned with election processes, including: i electoral officials at all levels, upon reasonable requests, ii members of legislative bodies and government and security officials whose functions are relevant to organizing genuine democratic elections, iii all of the political parties, organizations and persons that have sought to compete in As a prerequisite to organizing an international election observation mission, intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations may require that such guarantees are set forth in a memorandum of understanding or similar document agreed upon by governmental and/or electoral authorities. Election observation is a civilian activity, and its utility is questionable in circumstances that present severe security risks, limit safe deployments of observers or otherwise would negate employing credible election observation methodologies. the elections (including those that qualified, those that were disqualified and those that withdrew from participating) and those that abstained from participating,
90

iv news media personnel, and all organizations and persons that are interested in achieving genuine v democratic elections in the country; d Guarantees freedom of movement around the country for all members of the international election observer mission; e Guarantees the international election observer mission's freedom to issue without interference public statements and reports concerning its findings and recommendations about election related processes and developments; f Guarantees that no governmental, security or electoral authority will interfere in the selection of individual observers or other members of the international election observation mission or attempt to limit its numbers; g Guarantees full, country-wide accreditation (that is, the issuing of any identification or document required to conduct election observation) for all persons selected to be observers or other participants by the international election observation mission as long as the mission complies with clearly defined, reasonable and non-discriminatory requirements for accreditation; h Guarantees that no governmental, security or electoral authority will interfere in the activities of the international election observation mission; and i Guarantees that no governmental authority will pressure, threaten action against or take any reprisal against any national or foreign citizen who works for, assists or provides information to the international election observation mission in accordance with international principles for election observation. 13 International election observation missions should seek and may require acceptance of their presence by all major political competitors. 14 Political contestants (parties, candidates and supporters of positions on referenda) have vested interests in the electoral process through their rights to be elected and to participate directly in government. They therefore should be allowed to monitor all processes related to elections and observe procedures, including among other things the functioning of electronic and other electoral technologies inside polling stations, counting centers and other electoral facilities, as well as the transport of ballots and other sensitive materials.
91

15 International election observation missions should: a establish communications with all political competitors in the election process, including representatives of political parties and candidates who may have information concerning the integrity of the election process; b welcome information provided by them concerning the nature of the process; c independently and impartially evaluate such information; and d should evaluate as an important aspect of international election observation whether the political contestants are, on a nondiscriminatory basis, afforded access to verify the integrity of all elements and stages of the election process. International election observation missions should in their recommendations, which may be issued in writing or otherwise be presented at various stages of the election process, advocate for removing any undue restrictions or interference against activities by the political competitors to safeguard the integrity of electoral processes. 16 Citizens have an internationally recognized right to associate and a right to participate in governmental and public affairs in their country. These rights may be exercised through nongovernmental organizations monitoring all processes related to elections and observing procedures, including among other things the functioning of electronic and other electoral technologies inside polling stations, counting centers and other electoral facilities, as well as the transport of ballots and other sensitive materials. International election observation missions should evaluate and report on whether domestic nonpartisan election monitoring and observation organizations are able, on a nondiscriminatory basis, to conduct their activities without undue restrictions or interference. International election observation missions should advocate for the right of citizens to conduct domestic nonpartisan election observation without any undue restrictions or interference and should in their recommendations address removing any such undue restrictions or interference. 17 International election observation missions should identify, establish regular communications with and cooperate as appropriate with credible domestic nonpartisan election monitoring organizations. International election observation missions should welcome information provided by such organizations concerning the nature of the
92

election process. Upon indepen-dent evaluation of information provided by such organizations, their findings can provide an important complement to the findings of international election observation missions, although international election observation missions must remain independent. International election observation missions therefore should make every reasonable effort to consult with such organizations before issuing any statements. 18 The intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations endorsing this Declaration recognize that substantial progress has been made in establishing standards, principles and commitments concerning genuine democratic elections and commit themselves to use a statement of such principles in making observations, judgments and conclusions about the character of election processes and pledge to be transparent about the principles and observation methodologies they employ. 19 The intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations endorsing this Declaration recognize that there are a variety of credible methodologies for observing election processes and commit to sharing approaches and harmonizing methodologies as appropriate. They also recognize that international election observation missions must be of sufficient size to determine independently and impartially the character of election processes in a country and must be of sufficient duration to determine the character of all of the critical elements of the election process in the pre-election, election-day and post-election periods unless an observation activity is focused on and therefore only comments on one or a limited number of elements of the election process. They further recognize that it is necessary not to isolate or over-emphasize election day observations, and that such observations must be placed into the context of the overall electoral process. 20 The intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations endorsing this Declaration recognize that international election observation missions should include persons of sufficiently diverse political and professional skills, standing and proven integrity to observe and judge processes in light of: expertise in electoral processes and established electoral principles; international human rights; comparative election law and administration practices (including use of computer and other election technology); comparative political
93

processes and country specific considerations. The endorsing organizations also recognize the importance of balanced gender diversity in the composition of participants and leadership of international election observation missions, as well as diversity of citizenship in such missions. 21 The intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations endorsing this Declaration commit to: a familiarize all participants in their international election observation missions concerning the principles of accuracy of information and political impartiality in making judgments and conclusions; b provide a terms of reference or similar document, explaining the purposes of the mission; c provide information concerning relevant national laws and regulations, the general political environment and other matters, including those that relate to the security and well being of observers; d instruct all participants in the election observation mission concerning the methodologies to be employed; and e require all participants in the election observation mission to read and pledge to abide by the Code of Conduct for International Election Observers, which accompanies this Declaration and which may be modified without changing its substance slightly to fit requirements of the organization, or pledge to abide by a preexisting code of conduct of the organization that is substantially the same as the accompanying Code of Conduct. 22 The intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations endorsing this Declaration commit to use every effort to comply with the terms of the Declaration and the accompanying Code of Conduct for International Election Observers. Any time that an endorsing organization deems it necessary to depart from any of terms of the Declaration or the Accompanying Code of Conduct in order to conduct election observation in keeping with the spirit of the Declaration, the organization will explain in its public statements and will be prepared to answer appropriate questions from other endorsing organizations concerning why it was necessary to do so. 23 The endorsing organizations recognize that governments send observer delegations to elections in other countries and that others
94

also observe elections. The endorsing organizations welcome any such observers agreeing on an ad hoc basis to this declaration and abiding by the accompanying Code of Conduct for International Election Observers. 24 This Declaration and the accompanying Code of Conduct for International Election Observers are intended to be technical documents that do not require action by the political bodies of endorsing organizations (such as assemblies, councils or boards of directors), though such actions are welcome. This Declaration and the accompanying Code of Conduct for International Election Observers remain open for endorsement by other intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations. Endorsements should be recorded with the United Nations Electoral Assistance Division.

CODE OF CONDUCT FOR INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVERS International election observation is widely accepted around the world. It is conducted by intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations and associations in order to provide an impartial and accurate assessment of the nature of election processes for the benefit of the population of the country where the election is held and for the benefit of the international community. Much therefore depends on ensuring the integrity of international election observation, and all who are part of this international election observation mission, including long-term and short-term observers, members of assessment delegations, specialized observation teams and leaders of the mission, must subscribe to and follow this Code of Conduct. Respect Sovereignty and International Human Rights Elections are an expression of sovereignty, which belongs to the people of a country, the free expression of whose will provides the basis for the authority and legitimacy of government. The rights of citizens to vote and to be elected at periodic, genuine elections are internationally recognized human rights, and they require the exercise of a number of fundamental rights and freedoms. Election observers must respect the sovereignty of the host country, as well as the human rights and fundamental freedoms of its people.
95

Respect the Laws of the Country and the Authority of Electoral Bodies Observers must respect the laws of the host country and the authority of the bodies charged with administering the electoral process. Observers must follow any lawful instruction from the country's governmental, security and electoral authorities. Observers also must maintain a respectful attitude toward electoral officials and other national authorities. Observers must note if laws, regulations or the actions of state and/or electoral officials unduly burden or obstruct the exercise of electionrelated rights guaranteed by law, constitution or applicable international instruments. Respect the Integrity of the International Election Observation Mission Observers must respect and protect the integrity of the international election observation mission. This includes following this Code of Conduct, any written instructions (such as a terms of reference, directives and guidelines) and any verbal instructions from the observation mission's leadership. Observers must: attend all of the observation mission's required briefings, trainings and debriefings; become familiar with the election law, regulations and other relevant laws as directed by the observation mission; and carefully adhere to the methodologies employed by the observation mission. Observers also must report to the leadership of the observation mission any conflicts of interest they may have and any improper behavior they see conducted by other observers that are part of the mission. Maintain Strict Political Impartiality at All Times Observers must maintain strict political impartiality at all times, including leisure time in the host country. They must not express or exhibit any bias or preference in relation to national authorities, political parties, candidates, referenda issues or in relation to any contentious issues in the election process. Observers also must not conduct any activity that could be reasonably perceived as favoring or providing partisan gain for any political competitor in the host country, such as wearing or displaying any partisan symbols, colors, banners or accepting anything of value from political competitors. Do Not Obstruct Election Processes Observers must not obstruct any element of the election process, including pre-election processes, voting, counting and tabulation of results and processes transpiring after election day. Observers may bring irregularities,
96

fraud or significant problems to the attention of election officials on the spot, unless this is prohibited by law, and must do so in a non-obstructive manner. Observers may ask questions of election officials, political party representatives and other observers inside polling stations and may answer questions about their own activities, as long as observers do not obstruct the election process. In answering questions observers should not seek to direct the election process. Observers may ask and answer questions of voters but may not ask them to tell for whom or what party or referendum position they voted. Provide Appropriate Identification Observers must display identification provided by the election observation mission, as well as identification required by national authorities, and must present it to electoral officials and other interested national authorities when requested. Maintain Accuracy of Observations and Professionalism in Drawing Conclusions Observers must ensure that all of their observations are accurate. Observations must be comprehensive, noting positive as well as negative factors, distinguishing between significant and insignificant factors and identifying patterns that could have an important impact on the integrity of the election process. Observers' judgments must be based on the highest standards for accuracy of information and impartiality of analysis, distinguishing subjective factors from objective evidence. Observers must base all conclusions on factual and verifiable evidence and not draw conclusions prematurely. Observers also must keep a well documented record of where they observed, the observations made and other relevant information as required by the election observation mission and must turn in such documentation to the mission. Refrain from Making Comments to the Public or the Media before the Mission Speaks Observers must refrain from making any personal comments about their observations or conclusions to the news media or members of the public before the election observation mission makes a statement, unless specifically instructed otherwise by the observation mission's leadership. Observers may explain the nature of the observation mission, its activities and other matters deemed appropriate by the observation mission and should refer the media
7

97

or other interested persons to the those individuals designated by the observation mission. Cooperate with Other Election Observers Observers must be aware of other election observation missions, both international and domestic, and cooperate with them as instructed by the leadership of the election observation mission. Maintain Proper Personal Behavior Observers must maintain proper personal behavior and respect others, including exhibiting sensitivity for host-country cultures and customs, exercise sound judgment in personal interactions and observe the highest level of professional conduct at all times, including leisure time. Violations of This Code of Conduct In a case of concern about the violation of this Code of Conduct, the election observation mission shall conduct an inquiry into the matter. If a serious violation is found to have occurred, the observer concerned may have their observer accreditation withdrawn or be dismissed from the election observation mission. The authority for such determinations rests solely with the leadership of the election observation mission. Pledge to Follow This Code of Conduct Every person who participates in this election observation mission must read and understand this Code of Conduct and must sign a pledge to follow it.

PLEDGE TO ACCOMPANY THE CODE OF CONDUCT FOR INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVER I have read and understand the Code of Conduct for International Election Observers that was provided to me by the international election observation mission. I hereby pledge that I will follow the Code of Conduct and that all of my activities as an election observer will be conducted completely in accordance with it. I have
98

no conflicts of interest, political, economic nor other, that will interfere with my ability to be an impartial election observer and to follow the Code of Conduct. I will maintain strict political impartiality at all times. I will make my judgments based on the highest standards for accuracy of information and impartiality of analysis, distinguishing subjective factors from objective evidence, and I will base all of my conclusions on factual and verifiable evidence. I will not obstruct the election process. I will respect national laws and the authority of election officials and will maintain a respectful attitude toward electoral and other national authorities. I will respect and promote the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the people of the country. I will maintain proper personal behavior and respect others, including exhibiting sensitivity for host-country cultures and customs, exercise sound judgment in personal interactions and observe the highest level of professional conduct at all times, including leisure time. I will protect the integrity of the international election observation mission and will follow the instructions of the observation mission. I will attend all briefings, trainings and debriefings required by the election observation mission and will cooperate in the production of its statements and reports as requested. I will refrain from making personal comments, observations or conclusions to the news media or the public before the election observation mission makes a statement, unless specifically instructed otherwise by the observation mission's leadership. Signed ________________________________ Print Name _____________________________ Date __________________________________

99

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation and the Code of Conduct for International Election Observers were developed through a multi-year process involving more than 20 intergovernmental and international nongovernmental organizations concerned with election observation around the world. The process began informally in 200_ at the initiative of the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) and the United Nations Electoral Assistance Division (UNEAD) and included an initial meeting at the UN in New York and a meeting in Washington co-hosted by the OAS and NDI. Building on that foundation, the UNEAD, The Carter Center, and NDI formed a joint secretariat and launched the formal phase of the process in October 2003 at a meeting held at The Carter Center in Atlanta. This was followed by a September 2004 meeting in Brussels, which was hosted by the European Commission. An ongoing consultative process transpired among the participating organizations, which resulted in a consensus document that was offered for organizational endorsements beginning in July 2005. The secretariat was comprised of Carina Perelli and Sean Dunne for UNEAD, David Carroll, David Pottie and Avery Davis-Roberts for The Carter Center, and Patrick Merloe and Linda Patterson for NDI. The secretariat members prepared the documents, with Mr. Merloe serving as the lead drafter, drawing on a substantial body of existing documentation from organizations involved in election observation. During the process, the secretariat received critical input and comments from many of the participating organizations. The process was supported by financial assistance from the United Nations, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the European Commission, the Republic of Germany and the Starr Foundation, as well as a number of individual contributors.
100

Anexo 2

INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVATION MISSION


Presidential Election (Second Round), Ukraine - 21 November 2004

STATEMENT OF PRELIMINARY FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS Kyiv, 22 November 2004 - The International Election Observation Mission (IEOM) for the second round of the Ukrainian presidential election is a joint undertaking of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR), the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (OSCE PA), the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), the European Parliament (EP) and the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. This statement should be considered in conjunction with the IEOM's statement released on 1 November 2004, after the first round of voting. It is issued prior to a full and final analysis of observers' findings of the second round election day. Preliminary Conclusions As for the first round, the second round of the Ukrainian presidential election did not meet a considerable number of OSCE commitments and Council of Europe and other European standards for democratic elections. Despite a number of serious shortcomings being identified by the IEOM in its statement of 1 November, the authorities failed to take remedial action between the two rounds of voting to redress biased coverage on State media, misuse of State resources, and pressure on certain categories of voters to support the candidacy of Mr. Yanukovych. Overall, State executive authorities and the Central Election Commission (CEC) displayed a lack of will to conduct a genuine democratic election process.
101

On election day, although voting was conducted in a generally calm manner, overall, observers' assessed election day less favourably, particularly in the central and eastern regions, than 31 October. Observers noted a higher incidence of serious violations, including some isolated incidents of violence, and a pattern of intimidation, including directed towards observers, polling commission members and individual voters. Observers reported that in a significant number of polling stations commissions (PSC) members had been dismissed or ejected. Police were present in a majority of polling stations visited. In some instances, unauthorized persons were interfering in or directing the process, or otherwise attempting to influence voters. Despite the suspiciously high turnout in some regions (for example 96.31% in Donetsk and 88.41% in Lugansk, according to the preliminary CEC turnout figures), overcrowding was reported by IEOM observers as less of a problem in eastern regions than elsewhere. While far fewer voters were turned away from polling stations due to inaccuracies in the voter list during the second round than in the first, once again there was a regional variation, with fewer voters being turned away in the east. A high number of voters - approximately 5 per cent - were added to voter lists on election day. Almost all of the added voters used absentee certificates. This is of concern in view of the abuse of these documents noted by longterm observers prior to the election, and of the high number of voters using absentee voting certificates on election day, some being transported by bus in a number of regions. A regional variation also exists for this phenomenon, with most absentee certificates used in southern regions and fewest in western regions. The observers' assessment of the ballot counting process was worse than 31 October, including poorer overall organisation, and more questions raised about the accuracy of results reported. Problems included lack of sufficient attention to ballot security and counting procedures. In almost half of polling stations unauthorized persons were present including police and local government officials. In 10% of polling stations, some PSC members did not receive a copy of the protocol and in 18% of polling stations the PSC did not post the protocol publicly as required by law. Despite serious shortcomings in the process, the second round of the election offered voters a choice between the two candidates and their respective political programmes, despite unequal campaign conditions. However,
102

in Donetsk Oblast, preliminary turnout figures announced by the CEC are so improbable as to cast doubt on whether that choice was always safeguarded. Once again, a vibrant civil society demonstrated a high level of interest and engagement on the part of the citizens of Ukraine and their commitment to a democratic process. The period between the election rounds was marred by the continued failure of some State structures to respect citizens' rights to make their electoral choices freely and to comply with their legal obligation to maintain political neutrality. After the announcement of official first round election results, observers reported cases of public sector employees and students being pressured to support Mr Yanukovych, and a number of instances in which Mr Yushchenko's campaign activists were harassed by law enforcement bodies. The second round of voting was compromised by significant shortcomings: The abuse of State resources in favour of the Prime Minister demonstrated a widespread disregard for the fundamental distinction between the State and partisan political interests; Some citizens, whose livelihood depends directly or indirectly upon the State, were placed under duress to acquire and hand over to their superiors an absentee voting certificate. Observers reported that these documents were collected in the workplace on an organised basis. Hence these citizens were prevented from exercising their suffrage rights, as the acquisition of a certificate automatically excludes the voter from voting in the polling station where originally registered; In other regions, the failure to account properly for the number of absentee voting certificates issued and used could have facilitated multiple voting, thereby having a potential impact on the integrity of the results. Concern for this issue was underscored by observations of a high numbers of voters using absentee voting certificates, some being transported by bus in a number of regions; A lack of transparency in the tabulation of the first round preliminary election results, and delay in the announcement of final first round election results by the CEC, shortened the period available for the resumption of campaign activity and thus impacted negatively on an already tense political environment;
103

The CEC failed to provide information on all first round results at polling station level, thereby undermining confidence in the process. Despite repeated requests by the OSCE/ODIHR EOM prior to both rounds, it failed to provide information on the number of ballot papers issued to each TEC, as well as to polling stations outside Ukraine. Prior to the second round, it failed to provide the OSCE/ODIHR EOM or publicly announce the number of absentee voting certificates delivered and issued in each territorial election district, as well as the number of voters added to the voter lists in each territorial election district between both rounds. This demonstrated a lack of regard for transparency and accountability; The reluctance of the CEC to grant relief on complaints, thus impeding legal redress where electoral violations occurred; The inability of the local State executive to produce accurate voter lists, for whatever reason, and an evident lack of uniformity in the methods used by Territorial Election Commissions (TECs) and Polling Station Commissions (PSCs) to correct the lists between the election rounds; A large number of TECs were unwilling or unable to provide observers with data on the number of voters registered before 21 November election day; The last minute dismissals by TECs of hundreds of PSC members appointed by the opposition in Kirovohrad, a key marginal region, and others in Donetsk, Zakarpattiya, Zaporizhia, Kyiv, Khmelnitsky, Odesa, and Volyn, lessened transparency; The absence of legal provision recognising the right of non-partisan domestic observers to observe the poll in contradiction with OSCE commitments; There was a continuation of inflammatory campaign language exchanged between the two rounds, the large majority of which was targeted towards Mr Yushchenko; Overt bias in the State-funded media, which continued to favour the Prime Minister in news presentation and coverage of the campaign, thereby obstructing the opposition candidate's opportunity to convey his campaign message to the electorate on an equal basis; and, An overall constraint of the public's free access to balanced information resulting from the issuance, allegedly by the State administration, of so-called temnyky (guidelines on the content and presentation of news items).
104

Some notable encouraging aspects of the electoral process include: Citizens in many regions seemed more confident in exercising their basic right of free expression, including by displaying campaign material and symbols; The overwhelming imbalance of media coverage in favour of the Prime Minister was redressed to a partial and limited degree through wider coverage of opposition viewpoints, albeit for a short period, in some privately owned media; More than 300 journalists openly protested against effective censorship and constraints on freedom of expression represented by the temnyky guidelines; The first televised debate between the two main presidential candidates for a decade took place on State-owned UT1 TV. However, the airing of a biased round table discussion immediately after the debate was an abuse of publicly owned resources; After the first round of voting, the proceedings of the Supreme Court continued to be open and transparent, and the Court granted relief in many cases that were incorrectly decided by lower courts and the CEC; The airing of public information slots produced by the Committee of Voters of Ukraine increased voters' awareness of the electoral provisions; Co-operation extended to election observers by national-level and most local-level government structures, including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Inter-Departmental Working Group.

The transparency of the tabulation and announcement of official election results and the effective and impartial resolution of any election day and subsequent complaints and appeals will be of crucial importance in forming a final assessment of the 2004 presidential election. The IEOM calls upon the CEC to act as a politically neutral administrative body, and re-iterates its appeal to the CEC to post on its website all PSC results for both election rounds. The first round PSC-level results should be posted without delay. The second round preliminary PSClevel results should be posted as soon as they are received by the CEC. All PSC-level results should be posted no later than the announcement of final election results by the CEC. This action would enhance the transparency of the electoral process at its most critical phase and might serve to reassure voters and candidates of the accuracy of the election results.
105

OSCE/ODIHR observers will remain in Ukraine to assess the tabulation of results at TECs and the CEC as well as the post-election complaints and appeals processes, and the OSCE/ODIHR may issue additional public commentary on the process as necessary. The OSCE/ODIHR will issue a comprehensive Final Report approximately six weeks after completion of the process. The IEOM wishes to thank the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Interdepartmental Working Group of the Cabinet of ministers and other national and local authorities for their assistance and cooperation during the course of the observation. In particular, the IEOM wishes to acknowledge the efforts of those all those election officials throughout Ukraine who attempted to implement the election in accordance with the law and regulations. Preliminary Findings Background The first round of the 2004 Presidential election took place on 31 October 2004. On 10 November, the CEC announced official election results that revealed that none of the 24 candidates had secured a qualified majority of votes cast, and therefore, in accordance with the election law, the CEC scheduled a second round election for 21 November 2004. In this context, the law determines that the winning candidate is only required to receive more votes than his opponent to be elected. The successful candidate is scheduled to take office no later than 8 January 2005. Tabulation and Announcement of First Round Results The Election Law grants the CEC 10 days to determine the official election results after the first round (i.e. until 10 November). However, the Election Law does not establish a deadline for TECs and PSCs to complete and submit their results protocols to the CEC. This constitutes a shortcoming in the legal framework. The speed at which TECs finalised their election results (protocols) appeared to vary between regions. In some central regions, where preliminary results indicated relatively narrow margins between the two leading candidates, a significant number of complaints on the voting and counting
106

process were filed. The tabulation process encountered serious difficulties in at least 15 TECs across the country and delays in finalising their results were noted. Observers are aware of 10 TECs in which at least one PSC result was invalidated. The law fails to specifically provide for repeat voting in polling stations where results are invalidated. Observers have documentary evidence that the results from four PSCs in one TEC (in Sumy region) were incorrectly entered in the TEC protocol of results, with hundreds of votes being shifted from Mr Yushchenko to Mr Yanukovych. Other similar cases were noted in Khmelnytskyi region. Senior members of the Yanukovych campaign informed the OSCE/ODIHR EOM that electoral fraud had occurred in western Ukraine. Specifically, it was alleged that between 1.25 and 2 million illegal votes had been cast on behalf of voters resident abroad. In addition, it was claimed that 1.1 million votes for Yanukovych had been set aside by pro-Yushchenko PSCs. Upon further enquiry into both of these serious allegations, the OSCE/ODIHR EOM found no evidence to support them. At CEC level, problems with the computerised tabulation of preliminary results became evident. On 2 November, the system stopped tabulating additional PSC results, with 97.6% of the results processed. At that time, Mr Yanukovych held a lead over Mr Yushchenko, although his margin was clearly narrowing. According to the CEC, the stoppage was caused by a technical malfunction. The opposition claimed that the failure to provide complete information on the election results was a ploy to deny Mr Yushchenko the leading position. On 10 November, the CEC announced the results of the 31 October election. In contrast to unofficial preliminary results, the official results indicated that Mr Yushchenko was the leading candidate with 39.87% of the vote compared to Mr Yanukovych's 39.32%. The only other candidates who scored over 1% were: Mr Moroz (5.81%), Mr Symonenko (4.97%) and Ms Vitrenko (1.53%). According to the final election results, the sum of votes cast for the 16 least scoring candidates was less than 500,000; whereas these candidates claimed to have provided the CEC with a combined total of over 10,000,000 signatures supporting their registration as candidates. On 9 November, the CEC dismissed all members of TEC 100 (in Kirovohrad Region), on the basis that they had not fulfilled their legally prescribed duties. On 10 November, the CEC decided not to consider as valid the results from
107

this district, arguing that the TEC protocol was not produced in accordance with law. Results from TEC 100 were excluded from the official national-level results. The Supreme Court's ruling, which overturned the CEC's decision to invalidate the results of TEC100, requires the CEC to tabulate the PSC protocols in this district and to amend the official results. To date the CEC has not acted on this issue, which slightly increases the margin between the two leading candidates. After the first round, results data from all TECs was made public by the CEC some 10 days after the election, but the absence of publicly available data below TEC level prevents an adequate insight into the accuracy of tabulating the election results. The CEC did not comply with its often-stated intention to publish all PSC-level results, significantly lessening the transparency of the results tabulation process at the CEC, and further preventing an examination of the accuracy of the calculation of the results by candidates and civil society. Election Administration Despite two written requests prior to the first round, the CEC did not provide the OSCE/ODIHR EOM with information, including on the number of ballots printed and distributed to TECs and outside the borders of Ukraine. During the process of tabulating the first round results, the CEC modified its records on the number of ballots issued to TECs to coincide with the number of ballots reported as having been received by TECs in their protocols. This raised serious concern for the CEC's ability to regulate ballot production and distribution securely and accurately. The opposition alleged that legal provisions enabling absentee voting were abused during the first round and that, as a result, large-scale multiple voting occurred. The CEC responded by changing the paper on which the absentee certificates were printed, but did not take any steps to improve the accounting of these sensitive documents, for example, by keeping records of the number of absentee certificates distributed, issued and used. If misused, these documents could have the potential to impact upon the integrity of the election. On 15 November, the OSCE/ODIHR EOM wrote to the CEC requesting information on the number of ballots and the number of absentee certificates printed and delivered to each TEC. The CEC did not publicly announce, or
108

inform the OSCE/ODIHR EOM, of the number of ballots printed and delivered to each TEC. However, on 17 November, the CEC did announce that approximately 1.5 million absentee certificates were printed for the second round. On 17 November, the OSCE/ODIHR EOM wrote to the CEC requesting data on the number of absentee certificates issued to voters in each TEC. On 20 November, the Observation Mission requested information from the CEC on the number of additional voters registered in each TEC after the first round. The failure to provide all the information requested lessened the overall level of transparency at the highest level of the election administration and impeded the OSCE/ODIHR's observation efforts. On 10 November the CEC adopted a document addressing some problems encountered during the first round of voting. For example, it clarified that PSCs could correct minor errors on voter lists, such as the clear mispelling of names, thereby enabling these citizens to exercise their rights without the need for a TEC or Court decision. Additionally, it clarified the circumstances in which PSC members can be relieved of their duties due to their nonattendance at PSC sessions. Previously, this provision had been seriously abused by some TECs on the eve of the first round election. Indeed, prior to the CEC's Clarification, 27 PSC Chairs were dismissed in Poltava on questionable grounds. However, the document failed to remind the PSCs to ensure that ballot papers should be validated by placing the mark of the PSC stamp and a signature of a PSC member prior to handing the ballot paper to a voter. A few observers reported this as a problem on 31 October. In general, the composition of the lower level election commissions remained stable between the election rounds. Members of TECs and PSCs appointed by all first round candidates retain the right to remain on these bodies for the second round. However, once again, legal provisions were misused to dismiss members from a number of PSCs, for example in Kirovohrad region, where a large number of opposition members were excluded from the election process. This also occurred in Donetsk, Zakarpattiya, Zaporizhia, Kyiv, Khmelnitsky, Odesa, and Volyn oblasts. Voter Lists The law requires local State executive authorities to prepare voter lists based on data available to them from a variety of sources: passport offices, housing committees, tax offices, local branches of the Ministry of Interior, etc. Local authorities were required to prepare the updated Voter Lists by 1
109

July 2004. Ultimately, the local Government executive is responsible for the production of voter lists. Prior to first round the lists were delivered to PSCs through TECs. In addition, the law requires that PSCs make the voters list available for general familiarisation. However, most PSCs did not interpret this as a duty to display voter lists at polling stations, although usually they were available upon request to voters. This factor may have hidden the full scale of inaccuracies in the voter lists from public notice. On the 31 October election day, IEOM observers noted a large number of errors and/or omissions in the voter lists that challenged the principle of universality of the vote. Almost all TECs visited since the first election day informed observers that inaccurate voter lists constituted the main technical shortcoming. In accordance with the law, TECs must prepare new voter lists for the second round by 11 November. However, the TECs should only begin this work after the announcement of the second round by the CEC. These two deadlines coincided. Hence, TECs had no time to comply with their obligations. Nevertheless, in a few election districts TECs, PSCs and local government bodies started to update the lists on their own initiative prior to the announcement of the second round (TECs in Kharkiv, Zaporizhia, Poltava, Donetsk, Ivano-Frankivsk and Uzhgorod). The new lists should have included the names and data of those persons who were added to the voters lists during the first round, according to the decision of the respective election commissions and courts, as well as voters who came of age. The new lists were to be distributed to the PSCs by 13 November. PSCs were to make these available for public inspection and make changes to correct voters' entries including changes of residence. However, it is evident that the law envisages only making minimal changes to the voter lists during this period. Wide-ranging revision of the list is not foreseen. On 3 November, the Prime Minister issued an instruction to government authorities to ensure that correct information concerning the places of citizens' residence be supplied to election commissions during the process of correcting the voter list. However, the OSCE/ODIHR EOM assessed that local State administrative bodies were primarily responsible for inaccuracies in the original draft voter lists. Observers noted that many TECs and PSCs worked hard to correct the voter lists, but the time available before the second
110

round was limited, and some PSCs, in 18% of all territorial election districts, lacked adequate resources. Some regional variation was apparent however, and observers in Odessa and Zaporizhia questioned the commitment of the local election administration to produce accurate voter lists. In Donetsk, observers visited one PSC, where persons were working on what appeared to be a typed voter list. When asked if they were members of the PSC, they replied that they were Yanukovych campaign workers and that the PSC would begin its work the next day. While the CEC had issued Resolutions #155 and #1177 dealing with the updating of voter lists, observers reported an evident lack of uniformity in the manner in which TECs, PSCs and the local government executive addressed the problems of inaccurate voter lists after the first round. In general, there existed confusion and uncertainty in the intermediate and lower level election administration on procedures to correct the lists. In addition, in many instances observers noticed that a variety of working lists were being used simultaneously within the same electoral unit. In general, observers reported that citizens were not very active in visiting PSCs to check their voter list entries or adding their names to the voter lists, despite a number of public information programmes conducted at local level by TECs. However, in the majority of territorial election districts, PSCs went door-to door to check the lists. As previously mentioned, the CEC issued a document clarifying a variety of issues that had proved problematic on 31 October, including the role of TECs and PSCs in remedying mistakes on the voter list. The CEC gave PSCs the authority to change entries in the voter list without having to take a formal decision on the case. This CEC decision may have introduced the possibility of manipulation of the voter lists at PSC level. Resolution of Election Disputes after the First Round After the first round of voting, the majority of election complaints were filed with the CEC. Continuing a pattern noted before the first round, the CEC was passive in addressing alleged violations of the law and rejected most complaints on procedural grounds without considering their merits. A large number of complaints concerned the accuracy of TEC results protocols. Many TEC protocols recorded a number of votes cast that exceeded the number of ballots issued to the TEC. Nevertheless, in all of these cases, the majority of the CEC members voted to leave without consideration these complaints,
111

arguing that TEC protocols are not decisions or acts of an election commission, but simply mathematical calculations. In general, the Supreme Court was more active and effective in addressing legal violations and overturned several CEC decisions. The proceedings of the Supreme Court observed by the OSCE/ODIHR EOM have been open and transparent, and all parties have had the opportunity to present evidence and legal arguments in support of their claims. The Court's decisions on cases heard between the first and second rounds of voting appear to be consistent with applicable legal provisions. Notably, the Supreme Court issued an important decision protecting suffrage rights, when it reversed the CEC's invalidation of the first round voting results in TEC 100. In this case, the CEC annulled the entire election district results. The Supreme Court noted that the CEC had violated the right of universal suffrage of voters in 128 polling stations, and that the CEC had an obligation to tabulate the PSC protocols itself in order for the will of the people to be expressed. The Court also noted that invalidation of election results could only occur at the level of the PSC, and only in cases where the limited grounds stated in the Presidential Election Law were established. The various courts of appeal and local courts were also active in addressing legal violations. Although there was inconsistency in some decisions by lower courts and courts of appeal, overall, the court system was more responsive in addressing violations of the law than election commissions. On another positive note, the Supreme Court granted relief in some cases that were incorrectly decided by courts of first instance. The majority of complaints, in election commissions and courts, were filed by the Yushchenko campaign. The Campaign The law provides that the campaign period for the second round begins one day after the CEC formally calls for a second round to be held. As the CEC decided to use the full time given to it by law to announce the final election results and the second round, the successful candidates had only nine days to campaign. Only a very few high profile campaign events took place before 10 November, notably a large rally in Kyiv on 6 November in favour of Mr Yushchenko. The Yanukovych campaign filed a complaint with the CEC as this rally was held before the announcement of the second round. After the Supreme Court reversed the CEC's refusal to hear the complaint,
112

the CEC found that the Yushchenko campaign had violated the law. Observers noted pro-Yanukovych campaign events in Crimea on 8 November. Oleksandr Moroz, the Socialist Party leader, signed an agreement backing Mr Yushchenko in exchange for Mr Yushchenko's support for constitutional reform, to be enacted before 1 January 2005, and to take effect in 2006. Other first round candidates supporting Mr Yushchenko in the second round included former Prime Minister Anatoliy Kinakh, and Leonid Chernovetskyi. While the Mayor of Kyiv, Oleksandr Omelchenko, publicly supported Mr Yushchenko, the consent of his party (Unity) to this endorsement was less apparent. President Kuchma and Nataliya Vitrenko, presidential candidate for the Progressive Socialist Party in the first round, endorsed Viktor Yanukovych. Petro Symonenko, leader of the Communist party, urged his voters to vote against both candidates in the second round. Metropolitan Vladimir of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church's Moscow Patriarchate endorsed Mr Yanukovych. Anti-Yushchenko campaign material which asserted that he was an enemy of Orthodoxy was distributed in a number of churches. In addition, both candidates received messages of support from abroad, arousing mutual consternation from the respective opponents. On 12 November, Russian President Vladimir Putin joined President Kuchma and Mr. Yanukovych in an event highly covered by the media, the reopening of a ferry link between the Crimea and Russia. In the coverage, President Putin wished Yanukovych success in his candidacy. Although it was a lower profile endorsement, Viktor Yushchenko received the backing of the European People's Party, the centre-right group in the European Parliament. After the announcement of the second round, there was a relatively high, although imbalanced, visibility of the two campaigns in the mass media. There was a wide display and distribution of campaign material, and campaign events were held by both candidates. Yushchenko campaign material focussed on small posters and stickers, and his supporters frequently wore or tied orange ribbons to their cars, clothes, statues and public places, though this was far less visible in the east of the country. Billboards in favour of Mr Yanukovych were in evidence throughout Ukraine. The Yanukovych campaign devoted most of its campaign effort towards raising the turnout in the eastern and some southern regions, where Mr Yanukovych polled well in the first round. Indeed, Mr Yanukovych personally urged miners and residents of Luhansk region to vote, stating it was necessary
8

113

to boost turnout by 20% in the region. Observers noted that his campaign often employed door-to-door canvassing, and reportedly, this was intrusive at times. Overall, the tone of the campaign between the two rounds remained heated and personal. Inflammatory campaign material was once again distributed. The TV debate between the two candidates featured frequent personal accusations over policies and alleged corrupt practices. The candidates blamed each other for the polarization of politics during the election campaign. On 17 November, Mr Yanukovych's campaign manager implied at a press conference that he would call 30-40,000 miners from eastern Ukraine to defend the CEC from supporters of Mr Yushchenko. On 19 November Mr Yanukovych stated that he was against this suggestion. Also on 19 November, Mr Yushchenko urged his supporters to congregate in Kyiv's Independence Square after the close of the polls to defend their vote. Challenges to Civil and Political Rights Following the announcement of official results on 10 November, the majority of observers recorded numerous instances whereby public employees and students were pressured to support the Prime Minister. Such pressure was frequently directed by State officials or work supervisors against their subordinates. Observers also reported some cases where the opposition's campaign activities were impeded. The IEOM is seriously concerned by reports from its observers that firemen, policemen, tax officials, customs officials, teachers, health workers and some private sector factory workers, in Volyn, Lutsk and Lviv, were asked by their superiors at work to apply to PSCs for absentee certificates and demanded that these should be handed over to them. The retention of these certificates could prevent these persons from voting, thereby compromising citizens' suffrage rights. Furthermore, this apparently concerted activity appears to constitute an attempt to manipulate the election result. However, it is not clear who issued the instructions to their superiors. Other specific examples of concern include: Arrest and imprisonment of voters attempting to verify the protocols posted at a polling station in Sumy region; Disruption of pro-Yushchenko campaign activities in Kirovohrad and harassment of the pro-Yushchenko campaign activists in Luhansk by the police;
114

Inmates at one prison were told that they had to deliver a 90% vote for Yanukovych to retain the possibility of early release, family visits, and privileges; In Mykolaiv region, the detention and rough treatment of proYuschenko campaigners and an opposition MP for littering while handing out orange ribbons. Role of State Structures during the Campaign

There remained a lack of clear distinction between State and party resources in the second round. State officials continued to campaign on behalf of Mr Yanukovych. A number of local government officials and State employees, such as University Rectors and managers of public utilities, instructed their subordinates to vote for Mr Yanukovych. In Zaporizhia, observers reported that persons were checking voter registration records and asking voters for whom they would vote. On one occasion an observer noted that this task was performed by uniformed police. In some instances, observers reported that law enforcement and justice organs were employed to pressure or harass electoral commission members after the first round and that local officials interfered in the work of some TECs. These actions raise serious questions about the political neutrality of some State institutions, their respect for citizens' rights and the independence of election commissions. For example in Ivano-Frankivsk, Chernivtsi, Khmelnytskyi and Ternopil regions, where Mr. Yuschenko gained a commanding majority in the official results, local prosecutors opened criminal cases against TEC officials on inexplicable or questionable grounds. After the announcement of results, President Kuchma dismissed 15 senior local administration officials, in all cases in areas where Mr Yushchenko had won the first round of elections or performed well. In addition, observers received reports of local officials having signed undated letters of resignation or facing recrimination due to Mr Yanukovych's perceived poor showing in some areas, for example in Poltava region. In nine regions, observers noticed campaign material displayed on public buildings. In eight cases this was in favour of Mr Yanukovych. In at least ten regions, Mr Yanukovych had a campaign office in a public building. Only one such example for Mr Yushchenko was recorded. In 15 regions, observers reported that the equality of campaign conditions was poor or very bad.
115

The Media On 2 November, the OSCE/ODIHR EOM recommenced monitoring six nationwide TV channels, two channels with partial national-level coverage, the main newscasts of several regional TV channels and nine daily newspapers1. Over a one-week period after the first round of election, the media actively covered the activities and opinions of the two leading first round candidates. While many voters received exposure to a wider range of views than before the first round of election, Ukraine lacks a strong and independent media that can provide electors with balanced campaign coverage. Between 2 and 20 November, there was a divergence between the various media's portrayal of the candidates and the election campaign. The main three nationwide TV channels, UT1 (owned by the State), Inter and, to a lesser extent, 1+1 (both privately owned), continued to exhibit bias in favour of Mr Yanukovych and against Mr Yushchenko, thus repeating a pattern observed prior to the first round of election. Mr Yanukovych derived an excess of additional media exposure in his capacity as Prime Minister, thereby gaining an advantage prior to 11 November, when the official campaign period commenced. A broad interpretation of the newsworthiness of the coverage allotted to the Prime Minister, versus his role as a candidate, in State and some private media outlets, blurred the distinction between a State official carrying out official duties and a candidate engaged in campaigning. Conversely, other private TV channels, ICTV, STB and Novy Kanal, aired a greater diversity of views. In particular, they provided the opposition with more airtime, including direct-speech, during which it challenged the political opinions of its opponents and presented its electoral platform. However, these channels' broadcast range, and consequently their potential audience, is less than the three main networks. The political content of news coverage on the main TV channels continued to be controlled through temnyky (guidelines), which instruct editors to cover only certain points of view on political themes, events and issues while omitting others, thereby constraining the public's access to balanced information. Observers received numerous allegations that these guidelines are issued by the State administration. While the OSCE/ODIHR EOM was
116

not able to verify these allegations, it conducted a detailed analysis of prime time news devoted to domestic news items on UT1, Inter and 1+1. In a similar pattern to that noticed before the first round, almost 44% of these were presented in a conspicuously similar manner raising questions over the editorial freedom of the three channels. Prior to the first round of the election, a number of journalists from four TV channels initiated a statement against censorship on the main TV stations. To date, this statement has been signed by more than 330 journalists from a variety of TV channels. On 3 November, a presenter of the main UT1 evening news programme refused to read a statement by Mr Yanukovych's campaign headquarters on the issue of TV debates, saying that if it were aired it would also be necessary to present the opinions of the opposition candidate. On 9 November, a senior manager of State television reported that the news presenter was no longer an employee of UT1. On 15 November, Television: State-funded UT1, Private Inter, 1+1, ICTV, STB, Novy Kanal, TRK Ukraina and Channel 5. Newspapers: State Uriadovy Kurier, Golos Ukrainy, Private Facty I Komentarii, Segodnia, Den, Silski Visty, Ukraina Moloda, Zerkalo Tyzhna and Vechirni Visti. the news presenter filed a lawsuit against UT1 with a local Kyiv court requesting reinstatement and seeking damages. Another thirteen journalists of the UT1 main news program drafted an editorial policy agreement aimed at ensuring full, accurate and balanced news coverage and to limit pressure on journalists or TV company management. However, the management of UT1 refused to sign the document. UT1 complied with a CEC decision to allocate free airtime to candidates, and, in a positive development, for the first time in 10 years, a televised debate between the two main presidential candidates took place on UT1. Other channels also broadcast the debate. After the debate, UT1 aired a biased round table discussion programme in which only the supporters of the Prime Minister participated. In a positive development, UT1 aired public information advertisements, produced by a wellknown NGO, the Committee of Voters of Ukraine, to increase voters` awareness of electoral provisions and citizens' participation in the poll, and to encourage the public to check their entries in the voter list. However, in some regions of eastern Ukraine, observers reported that a few
117

pro-Yanukovych NGOs placed misleading campaign advertisements that were misrepresented as public service slots. The law requires the mass media to cover the election process in an objective manner and not to favour a particular candidate. UT1, Inter and 1+1 apparently violated this provision by broadcasting advertisements against Mr Yushchenko that were not labelled as paid advertisements and thus could have been produced at their own initiative. As their content went beyond acceptable limits of permissible campaign speech by inciting potential interethnic, racial or religious enmity, the airing of these slots was contrary to law and possibly the Constitution. The OSCE/ODIHR EOM's analysis revealed that in its news and current affairs programs, UT1, in the three-weeks preceding the second round, provided Mr Yanukovych with 84% of its political and election prime time news coverage, of which 99% was considered by the EOM as positive or neutral in tone. In sharp contrast, during the same period, Mr Yushchenko received only 16% of similar airtime, of which 46% had negative connotations. By displaying clear favouritism to the Prime Minister, UT1 comprehensively failed to meet its legal obligation to provide balanced treatment of the two candidates during the election process. No legal sanctions have been imposed on UT1 in the period prior to the second round of election. The political content of the channel during a campaign period is one of the clearest cases of the abuse of State resources and the failure to distinguish between the interests of incumbents and the needs of the public for objective information. Inter focused its political and election coverage on the activities of Mr Yanukovych, mostly in his capacity as Prime Minister. It devoted 71% of its political and election prime time news coverage to Mr Yanukovych, of an overwhelmingly positive tone. Conversely, during the same period, Mr Yushchenko received 29% of similar airtime, which was mostly neutral or negative in tone. The second of the big two private TV channels, 1+1, provided the opposition with more airtime than noted before the 31 October election, especially prior to the announcement of official election results. However, from 11 November, 1+1 adopted a similar editorial line to UT1 and Inter, and displayed clear support for Mr Yanukovych. Other private TV channels, ICTV, STB and Novy Kanal, covered a wider range of political views and opinions. The two channels with partial national-level coverage monitored by the ODIHR EOM had very different political positions. TRK Ukraina demonstrated
118

its overt support to the Prime Minister whereas Channel 5 continued to offer favourable coverage to Mr Yushchenko. Prior to the first round, this channel experienced and reported various obstructions in reaching its audience. No such problems were reported in the period prior to the second round contest. The print media continued to provide a plurality of views, but showed strong favouritism for or against one of the candidates. The State-funded newspaper Uriadovy Kurier demonstrated its support to the Prime Minister by granting him 96% of its political and election reporting which was mostly positive in tone. Another State-funded newspaper, Golos Ukrainy, was critical of Mr Yanukovych in its political and election reporting. Out of 14 regional television stations monitored by the OSCE/ODIHR EOM, 8 gave their support to Mr Yanukovych; For example, in Odessa, the State funded TV allocated 100% of its political and election prime time news coverage to the Prime Minister, with an exclusively positive or neutral tone. Conversely, the State funded broadcaster in Ivano-Frankivsk, TV Galichina, provided 67% of exclusively positive or neutral coverage to Mr Yushchenko. Election Day and the Vote Count At the time of writing, IEOM observers completed and sent reports from over 2.300 polling stations. Once again, voting was generally calm but observers noted a higher incidence of unrest at polling stations than the first round (7% of polling stations visited). Observers reported that in 15% of polling stations some PSC members had been dismissed or ejected Overall, observers' assessment of the environment and atmosphere in which the poll was conducted was less favourable than 31 October, with 8% assessing it as poor or very bad. Police were present at polling stations in large number (59%) and in 4% of polling stations visited, unauthorized persons were interfering or directing the process, a number similar to 31 October. In 36 polling stations visited persons were attempting to influence voters. Surprisingly, in view of the exceedingly high turnout in some eastern regions (for example 96.31% in Donetsk and 88.41% in Luhansk, according to the preliminary CEC turnout figures), overcrowding was reported as less of a problem in eastern regions (4% of polling stations) than in northern regions (12% of polling stations). Other anomalies were also noted in the eastern regions. For example, while most regions averaged 4% of voters casting ballots through a mobile ballot box (i.e. outside the polling station), in the east (Donetsk, Luhansk and Kharkiv regions) this figure averaged approximately 8%.
119

On 31 October, observers reported errors and omissions in the voter lists. On 21 November, far fewer voters were turned away, and where this was reported by observers the numbers involved were far fewer than previously. However, once again there was a regional variation, with most voters turned away in southern regions and fewest in the east. Based on the information supplied by PSCs, observers recorded the number of voters registered at each polling station. On 31 October, the national average was 1,813 voters per polling station, whereas on 21 November it was 1,838. Nevertheless, despite the inclusion of additional voters on the lists between the election rounds, a high number were added to voter lists on election day (approximately 5% of all voters casting ballots). The vast majority of these added voters used absentee certificates. This is of concern in view of the abuse of these documents noted by longterm observers prior to the election. A regional variation also exists for this phenomenon, with most absentee certificated used in southern regions and fewest in western regions. Generally, ballots were issued to voters in accordance with the legal provisions. However observers noted that the procedures were less scrupulously followed than in October (2.3% violation compared to 1% in October). The secrecy of the vote was not assured in over 4% of polling stations visited. Of concern, a much higher number of allegations of serious violations were received in the second round (almost 9% of polling stations visited) than during the first round (4%). Observers reported a higher number of serious violations (101) including 24 cases of voters being transported from polling station to polling station to vote 12 cases of series of apparently identical signatures on the voter lists (which indicate the receipt of a ballot) and five cases of ballot stuffing (placing a block of marked ballots in the ballot box). Complaints were filed in 11% of polling stations. In 7% of reports, observers assessed the conduct of polling as poor or very bad. There was a regional variation, with polling in western and northern regions being assessed negatively in 4% and 5% respectively. However, in central and eastern regions this figure was 11% and 9% respectively. As for voting, observers' assessment of the ballot counting process was worse than 31 October, with 11% assessing the process negatively. In one in six polling stations visited, the PSC did not pack and seal the voter list before the opening of the ballot box as required by law (10% on 31 October). In 17% of polling stations observed the PSC did not announce the number of the number of voters that had voted (12% on 31 October). In 8% of polling
120

stations observed, PSCs did not determine the validity of ballots in a consistent manner and in 7% PSC members were unable to scrutinize ballots. In 10% of polling stations, some PSC members did not receive a copy of the protocol and in 18% of polling stations the PSC did not post the protocol publicly as required by law. In almost half of polling stations unauthorized persons were present including police and local government officials. In 3 cases unauthorized persons interfered in the counting process. The atmosphere during the count was generally more heated with 23% of observers reporting disputes between PSC members during the count, although tension was not necessarily reported as a major problem. The PSCs organization of the counting process was assessed poorly in 15% of polling stations. In 11% of polling stations observers had a poor or very bad assessment of the accuracy of the results as reported (5% on 31 October). Tabulation and Announcement of Second Round Results After the first round, the CEC updated the computerised results tabulation system, and began to announce preliminary results at approximately 01.00 hrs on election night. Based on 76 report forms of observations at TEC level, observers assessed the process as poor or very bad in 9% of visits. The transparency of the tabulation was rated poorly in one in five TECs. In one in three, unauthorised persons, mostly police officers, were present. Tension was noted in one in eight TECs. While most observers were able to examine the PSC protocols at the TEC, one in seven was not granted access to do so. In addition, in one in four reports, observers had no access to the computerised tabulation of the results. Twelve hours after the close of polls, 75% of preliminary results were accounted for by the CEC. For the second round, the election law grants the CEC 15 days to determine the election results.

This statement is also available in Ukrainian. However, the English language version remains the only official document. Mission Information & Acknowledgements Mr. Bruce George, President Emeritus of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (PA), Special Coordinator appointed by the OSCE Chairman-in-Office, led the OSCE short term observers. Mr Doros Christodoulides, Member of Parliament
121

of Cyprus, led the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) delegation, Mr. Lucio Malan, Member of the Italian Senate, led the delegation of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly (NATO PA), and Mr Marek Siwiec, Member of the European Parliament led the European Parliament (EP) delegation. Ambassador Geert-Hinrich Ahrens headed the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission. The OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission (EOM) opened in Kyiv on 31 August with 57 experts and long-term observers deployed in the capital and twenty regional centres. On election day, the IEOM deployed 563 short-term observers from 33 OSCE participating States, including 31 parliamentarians from the OSCE PA, 21 from the PACE, 8 from the NATO PA and 9 from the European Parliament. 331 observers were accredited as OSCE/ ODIHR observers. The IEOM observed the polling and vote count in over 2,300 polling stations throughout the country and at over 80 TECs after polling stations were closed, to observe the tabulation of results. The OSCE/ODIHR will issue a comprehensive report on these elections approximately six weeks after the completion of the process. The IEOM wishes to thank the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Interdepartmental Working Group of the Cabinet of ministers and other national and local authorities for their assistance and cooperation during the course of the observation. In addition the IEOM is grateful to the Central Election Commission for providing accreditation documents. The IEOM also wishes to express appreciation to the OSCE Project Coordinator in Ukraine and embassies accredited in Kyiv for their support throughout the duration of the mission. For further information, please contact: Ambassador Geert Hinrich Ahrens, Head of the OSCE/ODIHR EOM, in Kyiv (Tel: + 38-044-537-79-01); Urdur Gunnarsdottir, OSCE/ODIHR Spokesperson or Gilles Saphy, OSCE/ODIHR Election Adviser, in Warsaw (Tel: +48-22-520-06-00); Mr. Vladimir Dronov, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, in Strasbourg (Tel: +33-388-41-20-00); Mr. Jan Jooren, Press Counsellor of the OSCE PA, in Copenhagen (Tel: +45 4041 1641); Mr. Pietro Ducci, European Parliament, in Brussels (Tel: +3222-84-66-56);
122

Mrs Svitlana Svyetova, NATO Parliamentary Assembly, in Brussels (Tel: +32-2-707-41-11).

OSCE/ODIHR Address: OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights Al. Ujazdowskie 19 00-557 WARSAW POLAND Tel: +48-22-520-06-00 www.osce.org/odih

123

124

Anexo 3

INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVATION MISSION Bosnia and Herzegovina - General Elections, 1 October 2006 STATEMENT OF PRELIMINARY FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS Sarajevo, 2 October 2006 - The International Election Observation Mission (IEOM) for the general election in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) is a joint undertaking of the OSCE, comprising the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) and the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (OSCE PA), and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE). This statement of preliminary findings and conclusions is delivered prior to the completion of the election process, including the tabulation and announcement of final results, the expiry of legal deadlines for hearing possible complaints and appeals, and instalment in office of elected officials. A conclusive assessment of the entire election will depend, in part, on the conduct of these remaining phases of the process. The IEOM will comment on the cantonal elections in the Federation of BiH (FBiH) only to the extent that they had an impact on the presidential and parliamentary elections. PRELIMINARY CONCLUSIONS The 1 October general elections in BiH were the first elections since the Dayton Agreement to be fully administered by the BiH authorities and represented further improvement and progress in the consolidation of democracy and rule of law. The manner in which these elections were conducted was generally in line with international standards for democratic elections. It is to be regretted that, due to constitutional ethnicity-based limitations to the right to stand for office, these elections were again in violation of Protocol no. 12 to the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR) and of the commitments made to the Council of Europe, as well as article 7.3 of the OSCE 1990 Copenhagen Document.
125

In a transparent process, the Central Election Commission (CEC) registered almost all candidate lists that had been submitted. In total, 56 political subjects including political parties, coalitions, independent candidates and lists of independent candidates, representing a wide political spectrum, competed in these elections and provided voters with a broad choice. A wide range of views was available to voters, especially through televised debates, the allocation of free airtime, and in the print media. The media met their legal obligations with regard to allocation of free airtime to election contestants. However, restrictive interpretation of legal provisions on the part of the broadcast media limited, in part, the news coverage of the campaign, as the broadcast media were reluctant to offer more informative news coverage. The election campaign was calm, overall, but was marked by sharp nationalist rhetoric and occasional inflammatory statements from key election contestants. The last days of the campaign passed in a calm manner, with the exception of rising tensions among Croat parties in Mostar. Save for the constitutional limitations mentioned above, the election legislation provides a sound basis for the conduct of democratic elections. The transition from an active to a passive system of voter registration was conducted in a generally smooth manner and appeared to be well accepted. Legal requirements regarding gender balance in candidate lists were met and 37 percent of all candidates in the elections observed were women. Nevertheless, the role of women during the campaign was limited. In the CEC, one member out of seven was a woman and 30 percent of MEC chairpersons were female. The CEC performed its duties in a transparent and efficient manner. Political subjects expressed general confidence in the professional work of the CEC and Municipal Election Commissions (MECs), although some expressed reservations over the appointment process of Polling Station Committees (PSCs). These claims have not been substantiated to date. Some 94 percent of IEOM observation reports assessed the voting as good or very good, with overcrowding in 9 percent of cases, group voting in 33 percent, and some cases of procedural irregularities. During the count, however, 26 percent of observers assessed the process as bad or very bad and procedural irregularities were frequently noted. Measures should be taken to remedy such shortcomings, but there were no significant infringements of the OSCE 1990 Copenhagen Document.
126

The election day process could significantly benefit from more extensive training of polling station commissioners. However, the general impression was that the elections were held in a positive environment and there were many examples of polling station commissioners taking considerable trouble to enable voters to exercise their democratic rights. Preliminary Findings Background The Central Election Commission of Bosnia and Herzegovina on 4 May 2006 called general elections for 1 October 2006. This announcement fell within the legally prescribed six month period, prior to the termination of previous mandates. These general elections were the first after the 1992-95 war to be fully administered by the BiH authorities. The elections took place within a revised legislative framework. The latest round of election law amendments were enacted in April 2006. A total of 7,245 candidates from 36 parties and 8 coalitions and 12 independent candidates stood for election at all levels.1 The political landscape in BiH remains largely divided along ethnic lines, with other issues playing a less prominent role. Key contests occurred mainly among political parties that competed with one another in their own ethnic communities. Thus, the Alliance of Independent Social Democrats (SNSD), the Serb Democratic Party (SDS), the Party of Democratic Progress (PDP), and other Serb parties competed for the Serb vote, while the Party of Democratic Action (SDA) and the Party for BiH (SBiH) competed for Bosniak votes. On the Croat side, a degree of fragmentation resulted recently from the breakaway of the new Croatian Democratic Union 1990 (HDZ 1990) from the Croatian Democratic Union of BiH (HDZ BiH). In contrast, some parties, including the Social Democratic Party (SDP), tried to present a more multi-ethnic profile. Election System and Legal Framework The state of BiH is comprised of two entities: the FBiH and RS. In addition, there is one autonomous district (Brcko). Legislative authority, at
1

All figures given have been provided by the BiH CEC.

127

the state level, is vested in a bi-cameral Parliamentary Assembly, composed of a directly elected House of Representatives (BiH HoR) and an indirectly elected House of Peoples. All BiH voters were eligible to elect the 42 deputies comprising the BiH HoR. In addition, the same constituency elected a three-member State Presidency. The institution collectively exercises executive power at the state level.2 At the entity level, voters in the FBiH elected 98 deputies to the FBiH House of Representatives and the ten cantonal assemblies. In the RS, voters elected 83 deputies to the RS National Assembly as well as the RS President and two Vice-Presidents.3 The IEOM has only commented on the FBiH cantonal elections to the extent that they impacted on the presidential and parliamentary elections. The electoral framework in BiH remains complex, reflecting the unique constitutional arrangements in the country.4 The 2001 Election Law of BiH forms the basis of the legislative framework and was most recently amended in April 2006. The amendments introduced substantive changes, including a new passive voter registration system and the abolition of the Election Complaints and Appeals Council. The election law is further supplemented by detailed CEC regulations and other pertinent laws. Overall, the election legislation provides a sound basis for a democratic election process, save for the constitutional limitations mentioned above. As previously noted in OSCE/ODIHR reports5 and in opinions adopted by the Venice Commission6, the legal framework continues to enshrine an ethnicity-based restriction to suffrage and citizens' ability to stand for office. Citizens who do not identify themselves as one of the three constituent
2 One Serb member was elected in the RS, one Bosniak and one Croat member were elected in the FBiH. 3 Voters in Brcko could opt to vote as either FBiH or RS voters. 4 The BiH Constitution is an annex to the 1995 General Framework Agreement for Peace (Dayton Agreement). It vests the international community and the High Representative, in particular, with considerable powers. However, the present High Representative has not used his prerogative to impose decisions and remove officials, in accordance with the Bonn Powers. 5 OSCE/ODIHR EOM Final Report on General Elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina, 5 October 2002, For example, http://www.osce.org/documents/odihr/2003/01/1188_en.pdf. 6 See, in particular, the opinion on the constitutional situation in BiH and the power of the High Representative of 11 March 2005 (CDL-AD(2005)004.

128

peoples, Bosniak, Croat and Serb, are effectively barred from standing for the State and RS presidencies. As well, voters registered in FBiH are limited in their choice of presidential candidate to either a Bosniak or a Croat, and RS voters can only vote for a Serb presidency member. Such measures are discriminatory and run counter to the Copenhagen Commitments and to Protocol no. 12 to the ECHR. They are also in violation of commitments made to the Council of Europe.7 Election Administration The 1 October general elections were administered by a three-tiered election administration: the Central Election Commission (CEC), 142 Municipal Election Commissions (MECs), and 4,299 Polling Station Committees (PSCs) with more than 15,000 PSC members. The CEC and the MECs are appointed for five-year terms, by the parliament and municipal authorities, respectively. PSCs are appointed for each election by the MECs. The sevenmember CEC is ethnically balanced and its chairperson rotates every 15 months amongst the members. Until last year, the CEC included three international members. These posts have now been filled by one additional member from each of the 'constituent peoples'. As a result, these elections will be the first to be exclusively administered by the BiH authorities. Generally, the CEC functioned efficiently in elaborating various by-laws necessary for the uniform implementation of legal provisions in good time. Important decisions were mainly taken by consensus. The CEC also enjoyed a general confidence from political parties. MECs were well organized, experienced and prepared for the elections. Most MECs thoroughly and responsibly fulfilled their legal obligation to train the PSCs in their municipalities. However, neither a manual nor other material necessary for ensuring uniform conduct on election day was provided by the CEC due to insufficient financial resources. This led to an unsystematic training programme for PSCs. The lack of an officially approved consolidated text of the election law was an additional difficulty for the election administration. In line with legal provisions, the CEC elaborated a lottery for the appointment of PSCs, which dispensed with previous multiethnic composition
7

See Accession Opinion 234 (2002) and Resolution 1513 (2006).

129

requirements. However, a technical error in the initial lottery led to the overrepresentation of certain political subjects. A second lottery was ordered by the CEC, and PSCs were subsequently formed within the legal time limits. Some MECs expressed concern over the fact that a substantial number of PSC members had no previous experience, and this might have influenced their performance on election day. Some smaller parties did not nominate enough members to fill all allocated PSC posts. This obliged relevant MECs to fill the extra places with voters having previous election experience and resident in that PSC area. Such appointments, as with certain chairperson nominations, became the subject of complaints made to MECs. These were on the whole resolved without controversy. Many parties expressed concern over this process and some claimed that other parties were trading PSC places to stack certain commissions in their favour. Such claims could not be substantiated. Special categories of voters (absentee, mobile, tendered ballots, out-ofcountry) required the organization of specialized polling stations and a separate count at a Main Counting Centre in Sarajevo. While meticulously regulated by the CEC to ensure transparent and accountable counting procedures, the work of the Main Counting Centre is not yet completed and may last for more than a week, thus delaying the final results of the election. This may result in differences between the preliminary and final allocation in seats, with a possible impact on public confidence. Voters Registration The transition from an active to a passive system of voter registration was conducted in a generally smooth manner and appeared to be well accepted. The Central Voters Register (CVR), which provided the data for voter lists, closed on 17 August. As of 15 September, the overall number of registered voters increased by more than 400,000 to 2,755,207, while the number of absentee voters fell almost five-fold. By official estimates, a small number of voters were not included in the CVR as a result of their non-registration with the CIPS (Citizens Identification Protection System) database, upon which the CVR is based. Acting inclusively, the CEC decided to include all voters who had applied to CIPS between 17 August and 15 September in supplements to the CVR excerpts, which represent the voter lists. These were provided to PSCs two days before election day. Voters who applied after 15 September were allowed to vote by
130

tendered ballot, based on temporary IDs issued by the relevant CIPS offices. Displaced persons (DPs) had to decide before 18 July whether they would exercise their legal right to vote in their pre-war (1991) municipality or in their current place of residence. Voters who had lost their DP status between this day and the closing of the CVR on 17 August were allowed by CEC decision to retain their special rights for the purpose of this election. Such a decision was commendable in that it sought to be inclusive and was reached after a meticulous examination and in accordance with CEC regulations; the decision affected some 4,000 voters. Candidate Registration The certification process was completed within the legally prescribed deadlines. Following the complaints and appeals process, a total of 56 political subjects was certified to stand in the elections at all levels. Among them, a total of 36 parties, 8 coalitions, and 12 independent candidates competed at state and entity level.8 A total of 7,245 candidates were certified to run in the elections on 773 separate candidate lists for all elections or 527 candidate lists, excluding the cantonal elections. The order on the ballots was determined by a lottery and no complaints were expressed in this regard. Campaign Environment Although campaigning got underway some months before the election, it picked up steadily after the official start of the campaign on 1 September. The intensity of campaign activities varied across the country. Activities included rallies, smaller-scale public meetings, door-to-door campaigning, billboard posters and extensive media use. Isolated cases of campaign posters on public buildings were observed. The inability to pass constitutional changes in April 2006 had an impact on parties' positions during the election and was used by some domestic political forces during the electoral campaign. While certain parties attempted to raise the profile of issues of the economy, education and social welfare, key questions of the constitutional structure prevailed and much of the campaign was dominated by nationalist rhetoric. Key Bosniak politicians advocated the further integration of BiH as a unitary state without entities. Some Serb politicians repeatedly raised the option of an independence referendum for RS. A link was sometimes made between the status of the RS and ongoing talks on Kosovo. The High Representative
131

These figures were provided by the CEC. publicly warned Mr. Dodik, head of the SNSD, on 18 September that steps would be taken against him if such divisive language continued. In addition, some Croat politicians continued to raise the possibility of a third Croat entity. The SDP's decision to put forward only a Croat candidate in the FBiH for the state presidency proved controversial. Croat parties objected that, as the SDP's support base had traditionally been mainly among Bosniak voters, the Croat representative might be elected mainly by Bosniaks. Isolated instances of inflammatory language directed against other ethnic groups were noted at party rallies of the SDA and SDP in Brcko and of the Democratic Movement of Srpska in Pale. The campaign atmosphere was also influenced by ongoing discussions of war crimes from the 1992-1995 conflict. The signing of a special cooperation agreement between the RS and Serbia in Banja Luka five days before the election was considered by many to be empty politicking to attract voters, but invited comment both within and outside BiH as to its potentially destabilizing effects on BiH and the region. In the week before the election, five candidates for the BiH presidency announced their withdrawal from the race. This decision had no legal consequence and officially they remained candidates. Political parties expressed few complaints regarding the campaign. They were generally able to conduct their campaign activities without hindrance. Numerous instances of defaced or torn down billboard posters were observed. Some opposition parties made general allegations of abuses of administrative resources. Political parties expressed concerns about media coverage, although no parties complained of not receiving their legally allocated free airtime. Most parties expressed a general confidence in the CEC, although several had fears that certain PSCs might be biased, especially in remote areas. They also frequently expressed confidence that the new passive voter registration system had improved the quality of voter lists. Participation of Women and National Minorities While there have been improvements to the legal and institutional framework with the adoption of the Law on Gender Equality in 2003, women in BiH remain underrepresented in political and public life and implementation of this law has been limited so far. The Election Law makes no provision for gender representation in the election administration. When the Election Law
132

was amended in early 2006, intensive lobbying by the State Gender Agency for inclusion of such provisions was not successful. Nevertheless, women are involved at all levels of the election administration. Of seven CEC members, one is a woman and 30 percent of MEC chairpersons are female; some 30 MECs were all male while only two were all female. Legal provisions regarding gender balance in candidate lists were respected and 37 percent of all candidates for the electoral races observed were women. The Election Law requires that every candidate list includes at least one-third of the minority gender, equally spaced on the list. 67 women and 460 men topped candidate lists. Participation of female candidates in the election campaign was very limited. 17 national minorities are legally recognised in BiH, but most of these are small with Roma being the only numerically significant minority population. In the absence of a new census since 1991 and as a consequence of wartime displacements, the size of the Roma minority is unclear. Estimates range from 30,000 to 100,000. During the election, no political parties specifically represented national minority interests in the country, although at least one party included Roma candidates in their lists. Media BiH has a pluralistic media environment that includes both public and private broadcasters and a variety of print media. Respect for legal provisions regarding free airtime on public broadcasters and regular televised debates allowed candidates to convey their messages to the electorate. In general, voters were exposed to a broad range of views, providing the opportunity to make informed choices. However, the campaign in the media was dominated by rhetoric between parties rather than focused on substantive issues. News coverage of the campaign suffered from a restrictive interpretation of legal provisions. This may have led to media's confusion regarding the differentiation between providing information about candidates and campaig-ning on their behalf; broadcasters apparently maintained that if a candidate was to be interviewed during the daily news coverage, then all candidates should be given airtime to fulfil the legal requirement for equal conditions. As a result, broadcasters seemed reluctant to offer lively news coverage of the campaign. The majority of the media monitored showed limited interest in the electoral campaign.9 Instead, they devoted a significant portion of their prime
133

time news coverage to the activities of the authorities, outside of the campaign context. Media monitoring results showed that in the four weeks preceding the election, the state-level public broadcaster BHT devoted 25 percent of its political and election prime time news coverage to BiH Council of Ministers activities, which were reported in an exclusively positive or neutral tone. The entity-level FBiH and RS governments received the next highest coverage (16 and 21 percent, respectively), which was primarily positive or neutral. Regarding political parties and coalitions, most coverage was devoted to the SNSD at 7 percent and the SDA at 5 percent. While 64 percent of SDA's coverage was positive and 36 percent was neutral in tone, only 20 percent of SNSD's coverage was assessed as positive and 37 percent as negative. There were discernable differences in news coverage between the two public entity broadcasters, whose coverage of political subjects appeared to have been based along ethnic lines. The RS entity public broadcaster, RTRS, favoured incumbent political subjects in the RS and used 62 percent of its political and election prime time news coverage to focus on activities of the RS government (44 percent), the RS president (10 percent), and the SNSD (8 percent). This coverage was predominantly positive or neutral in tone. By comparison, the FBiH entity public broadcaster, FTV, favoured the SDA, devoting 15 percent of its coverage (mainly neutral and positive) to the party. Its prime time news political and election coverage was primarily focused on activities of the FBiH government (28 percent), which were reported mainly in a positive or neutral tone. Private broadcasters monitored exhibited similar patterns of low interest in the electoral campaign during their news coverage. TV Pink BiH devoted 30 percent of its political and election prime time news coverage to the RS government (primarily positive or neutral). The second most-featured political subject was the SNSD (25 percent, mainly positive coverage). Television: Publicly-funded BHT, FTV and RTRS, Private OBN, Pink TV BiH and Mreza Plus. Newspapers: Dnevni Avaz, Oslobodjenie, Nezavisne Novine, Dnevni List and Glas Srpske By comparison, the Mreza Plus private network allocated the largest portion of its political and election prime time news coverage to the activities of BiH Council of Ministers, the entity-level FBiH government and the SDA, which was mainly positive and neutral in tone. In contrast, SNSD received primarily negative or neutral coverage. The third monitored privateowned broadcaster
134

OBN gave less coverage to the activities of the authorities and devoted the largest portion of its election and political news coverage to NSRzB. The print media provided lively coverage of the election campaign and a plurality of views, but invariably supported specific political parties and coalitions. As such, voters could form an objective view of the campaign only if they read several publications. The prime time news coverage by regional broadcasters was also shaped along ethnic lines. In Tuzla, for example, the local broadcaster, TV Tuzla, provided clear support to the SDP by devoting as much as 26 percent of overwhelmingly positive or neutral coverage to the party. In comparison, the Mostar-based, HTV Mostar, was slightly inclined in favour of HDZ. The third monitored regional broadcaster, ATV (based in Banja Luka), provided most of its prime time news coverage to the activities of the RS government. Complaints and Appeals Prior to the deployment of the EOM and during the certification of candidates, the SBiH nominated a Bosniak to stand as a candidate in the Republika Srpska (RS) for the BiH presidency. This application was rejected by the CEC on the above mentioned grounds, which restrict candidacy on the basis of ethnicity. The decision was upheld by the Appellate Division of the BiH State Court and has been appealed to the Constitutional Court, as the final instance. The SBiH has publicly stated its intention to appeal to the ECHR on the matter. During the course of the election process observed, there were few formal complaints made to MECs. In most cases, election disputes were settled informally between political subjects, without lodging of formal complaints. The CEC considered 20 appeals on MEC decisions, mostly concerning formation of PSCs and their appointment and rejected the majority of them. Three complaints filed with the CEC alleged use of inflammatory language during the campaign. Although all of them were formally rejected, the CEC initiated a procedure ex officio in one of the cases; it established that a song used during campaigning by the Serb Radical Party, Dr. Vojislav eelj could incite violence or hatred through its use of certain nationalist slogans. The CEC fined the party the maximum amount prescribed. There was also a complaint to the CEC alleging abuse of public resources during the campaign by an incumbent candidate. It is of concern that this
135

complaint was dismissed by a letter signed by the CEC Chairperson, without its consideration during a CEC session and without a collegiate decision on the matter. Three CEC decisions10 were appealed to and subsequently upheld by the Appellate Division of the BiH Court. The Court adjudicated the appeals with some delay vis--vis the legal requirements, but failed to provide any justifiable reasons for these delays. The Communications Regulatory Agency (CRA), which is tasked to deal with broadcast media violations during the elections, reported receiving 10 complaints regarding the conduct of the media. These complaints mainly alleged unfair treatment of political subjects. However, the CRA decided to deal with them only after the elections. An early decision by One appeal challenged the rejection of a request to establish a polling station, and two other appeals questioned the rejection of nominees to PSCs on the grounds of missed deadlines. the CRA may have clarified certain elements of the 'equal treatment' provision, an issue that was cited by broadcasters as a reason not to engage in certain types of election coverage. There is no codified right under the current legislation to a public hearing on complaints and appeals. Although public hearings may be granted by adjudicating authorities at their discretion, this failed to happen in practice. Domestic Observers Domestic observation was fragmented, and the scope and methodologies of the groups were highly diverse. 29 domestic non-government organizations (NGOs) were accredited to observe the elections, with a total of 4,136 domestic observers, not nominated by political parties. The NGO network OKO coordinated activities of seven domestic NGOs in conducting a nationwide election observation effort. There were also almost 30,000 political party observers registered by MECs for election day. Election Day On election day, voter turnout was reported by the CEC as 54.48 percent, as officially reported.
136

The opening of polling stations was assessed as good or very good by IEOM observers in 92 percent of cases. All polling stations opened within 30 minutes of the legal deadline. However, in 6 percent of cases observed, STOs reported that those present did not have a clear view of the preparations for opening, which may have influenced their overall assessment. Voting during election day proceeded smoothly, although overcrowding and group voting were noted in many places by observers. In 3 percent of polling stations, ballot boxes were not properly sealed. Procedural problems were observed by STOs, especially voters not receiving a proper explanation as to how to fill in ballots, voters not always marking their ballots in secrecy, and signatures not being checked against ID documents. On a positive note, there were no observations by STOs of multiple voting or carousel voting. However, it was noted that in 55 percent of polling stations observed, voters were turned away due to either not being in the voter lists where they are registered or for being at the wrong polling station. PSCs generally acted helpfully, assisting voters in trying to locate their correct polling stations. STOs overall assessment of the voting process was noted as good or very good in 94 percent of cases. However, there were some instances observed of polling station commissioners or party observers trying to influence voters' choice. The process deteriorated somewhat during the course of the counting and observers accessed PSCs understanding of procedures as bad or very bad in 26 percent of cases observed. In 39 percent of cases, PSCs had difficulty in completing the results protocol and in 22 percent of cases, the results did not reconcile. In addition, the results poster was not posted in 34 percent of polling stations observed and in 44 percent of cases, summary results forms were not made available to observers. Unauthorized people either directing or interfering in the count process were noted in 14 percent of polling stations observed at closing. PSC members commented that many of the problems were as a result of poor training prior to the election. More seriously, two singular cases of deliberate falsification were reported by STOs. In one case, ballot box stuffing was noted in Livno and in Zvornik STOs observed one polling station in which ballots were being marked during the count by a political party observer. Based on initial observation, tabulation at MEC level was noted as good or very good 92 percent of cases. Of note, no MEC was assessed
137

as very bad. MECs generally had a good understanding of tabulation procedures and the organization was considered good by all STOs observing. Due to the lack of clear instructions from the CEC, a number of MECs decided to start the tabulation only upon receipt of all materials from PSCs. The campaign silence period was breached by some parties. Allegations are being investigated by the CEC.

This statement is also available in the official languages of BiH. However, the English version remains the only official document. MISSION INFORMATION & ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission opened in Sarajevo on 25 August with 14 experts and 17 long-term observers deployed in the capital and eight regional centres. On election day, 364 short-term observers were deployed in an International Election Observation Mission (IEOM), including 46 parliamentarians from the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and 19 from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE). In total, there were observers from 43 OSCE participating States. The IEOM observed the polling and vote count in over 1,600 polling stations throughout the country and in 61 MECs after polling stations closed, to observe the tabulation of results. Mr. David Heath, Member of the UK Parliament and of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly was appointed by OSCE Chairman-in-Office as Special Coordinator to lead the short term OSCE observation mission. Lord Russell-Johnston, former President and current member of the PACE, led the Delegation of the PACE. Ambassador Lubomir Kopaj headed the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission. The IEOM wishes to thank the authorities of BiH for the invitation to observe the elections, the Central Election Commission for providing accreditation documents, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other state and local authorities for their assistance and cooperation. The IEOM also wishes to express appreciation to the OSCE Mission to BiH for their support throughout the duration of the mission and the Embassies of OSCE participating States in Sarajevo for their support.
138

For further information please contact: Ms. Urdur Gunnarsdottir, OSCE/ODIHR Spokesperson (+48-603-683 122); or Mr. Vadim Zhdanovich, OSCE/ODIHR Senior Election Adviser, in Warsaw (+48-603-942 914); Mr. Bas Klein, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, in Strasbourg (+33-662-265 489). Mr. Andreas Baker, OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, in Copenhagen (+45- 601-08030); Amb. Lubomir Kopaj, Head of the OSCE/ODIHR EOM, in Sarajevo (+387-33-752 888).

. . .

139

140

Anexo 4

INTERNATIONAL ELECTION OBSERVATION MISSION PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS, REPUBLIC OF ARMENIA, 12 MAY 2007
STATEMENT OF PRELIMI NARY FIN DINGS AND CONCL USI O N S Yerevan, 13 May 2007 - The International Election Observation Mission (IEOM) for the 12 May parliamentary elections in Armenia is a joint undertaking of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ ODIHR), the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (OSCE PA), the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and the European Parliament (EP). This statement of preliminary findings and conclusions is delivered prior to the completion of the election process, including the tabulation and announcement of final results, the handling of possible post-election day complaints or appeals, and the installment into office of the newly elected members of the National Assembly. The election is assessed in line with OSCE and Council of Europe commitments, other international standards for democratic elections and national legislation. The final assessment of the election will depend, in part, on the conduct of the remaining stages of the election process. The OSCE/ ODIHR will issue a comprehensive final report, including recommendations for potential improvements, approximately two months after the completion of the election process. The PACE will present its report at its Standing Committee meeting on 24 May. The institutions represented in the IEOM stand ready to continue to support the authorities and civil society of Armenia in the conduct of democratic elections. PRELIMINARY CONCLUSIONS The 12 May 2007 elections for the National Assembly of the Republic of Armenia demonstrated improvement and were conducted largely in accordance with OSCE and Council of Europe commitments and other
141

international standards for democratic elections. The Armenian authorities and other actors in the electoral process took steps to address previous shortcomings, but were unable to fully deliver a performance consistent with their stated intention that the election would meet international standards, and some issues remained unaddressed. The Election Code was considerably amended and improved since the 2003 parliamentary elections, and provides a good basis for the organization of genuinely democratic elections, although some shortcomings remain. The amended Election Code clarifies a number of ambiguities in the process as well as the legal consequences of non-compliance. The election authorities generally worked efficiently in the pre-election period, and were technically well equipped and prepared for election day. Candidate registration was carried out by the Central Election Commission (CEC) and the Territorial Election Commissions (TECs) in an inclusive manner. Other positive aspects of the pre-election process included: The CEC demonstrated ongoing efforts to enhance transparency of election procedures, such as a schedule of regular press briefings and the provision of key information on its website. Substantial training of election officials and voter education efforts took place. For the first time there was a central and computerized voter register. The police, as the responsible agency, took proactive measures (along with the CEC and others) to correct inaccuracies and involve the electorate in upgrading the voter list through telephone hotlines and advance publication of the voter list on the CEC website. There was visible and dynamic campaigning by many contestants in both the proportional and majoritarian contests, which took place in a permissive environment. There was extensive media coverage of the election, with an apparent effort to enable most parties and candidates to convey their messages, although largely devoid of critical viewpoints. Public media adhered to legal requirements concerning allocation of free airtime during the official campaign period. Women's representation in the electoral contest was improved in line with the amended Election Code providing that women should constitute at least 15 per cent of each proportional contest party/bloc list and be in at least every tenth position on the list.
142

However, the following issues raised concerns: Gaps remain in the regulatory framework for elections. Existing regulations to address important areas of the electoral process, such as early campaigning and issues of possible vote buying were not implemented. The intertwining at all levels of political and business interests is of concern, especially in view of relatively weak provisions and enforcement regarding transparency and disclosure of campaign finances. The mechanisms to regulate the election process and correct irregularities were mostly passive. Publicly identified concerns were generally not acted upon in the absence of formal complaints. The complaints and appeals process brought to light inconsistencies and contradictory elements in the legal framework. TEC leadership troikas (chairperson, deputy chairperson and secretary) were dominated by representatives of the Republican Party, Armenian Revolutionary Federation (ARF) Dashnaktsutiun and appointees of the President, which challenges the spirit of balanced composition as intended by Election Code provisions. The majoritarian contests were characterized by a low number of candidates - just under three per constituency on average. Seven out of 41 constituencies had only one candidate. The separation of the ruling party and the State appeared to be less than distinct in some important elements of the campaign, the most visible of which was the convergence of the election campaign of the Republican Party with a longer-running campaign celebrating the fifteenth anniversary of the Armenian Army, sponsored by the Ministry of Defense. Negative newspaper articles relating to private comments by an opposition leader, allegedly recorded surreptitiously, and subsequent public remarks by the president referring to those comments as a serious criminal act, introduced a negative element to the campaign environment.

Some violent incidents occurred during the campaign period, but they appear not to have significantly impacted upon the overall electoral environment. On election day, voting took place in a mostly calm atmosphere. The conduct of voting was assessed positively in the vast majority of polling stations observed (94 per cent). Training of PEC members was evident with PECs generally following procedures, including the checking of voter
143

identification. Domestic observers were present in 82 per cent of the polling stations. Some identified problems included: unauthorized persons present in polling stations (17 per cent), overcrowding (14 per cent) and challenges to secrecy of voting due to the construct of voting booths (17 per cent). Problems of an apparently more deliberate character emerged in some parts of the country. A few instances of tension due to the conduct of proxies or unauthorized persons were observed. People voting more than once were observed in two TECs and potential vote fraud schemes were identified in two cases. Counting was mostly conducted according to procedures but in 17 per cent of polling stations observed the organizational requirements led to difficulties and consequently to an assessment of the counting as bad or very bad by IEOM observers. In a number of observations (6 per cent), the voter's choice on the ballot was either not declared, not shown to those present, or results for contestants not announced. Difficulties compiling protocols were observed in 20 per cent of PECs, and significant errors in 8 per cent. In at least three TECs, PECs completed protocols at the TEC premises, representing a lapse in procedure and the potential for results falsification. Deliberate falsification of results was observed at four polling stations, and an attempt in two polling stations. While the IEOM does not have a complete impression of the results tabulation due to the slow rate of tabulation, although apparently within the legally prescribed timeframe, IEOM observers recorded procedural and technical errors. Two issues of concern which did not impact on the election process itself were also noted by the IEOM: The Armenian authorities' last-minute denial of visas to OSCE/ODIHR observers seconded by one OSCE participating State (Turkey) was not in line with the commitment in the 1990 OSCE Copenhagen document to invite election observers from any other OSCE participating State.1 Prior to the elections, the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission (EOM) received criticism from State authorities, including in public written statements, that called into question both the veracity of its findings, and its methodology. The IEOM does not agree with such criticism and stands by the findings of the OSCE/ODIHR EOM third interim report.
144

PRELIMINARY FINDINGS Background The 12 May 2007 elections were to elect 131 seats in the National Assembly (parliament). Members of the National Assembly are elected for five-year terms. Ninety seats are elected on the basis of a national proportional contest of party/bloc lists, and 41 by majoritarian contest in single-mandate constituencies. In the proportional contest, to win election a party must pass a threshold of 5 per cent of the valid vote, while a bloc must pass 7 per cent. In the majoritarian contests, the candidate polling the highest number of votes is the winner (first past the post).2 Previous elections in the Republic of Armenia in 2003, 1999, 1998, and 1996 have been assessed as falling short of OSCE commitments and other international standards for democratic elections.3 OSCE Copenhagen Document, 1990, Art. 8: They will therefore invite observers from any other [OSCE] participating Stateto observe the course of their national election proceedings.... 2 In cases where there is only one candidate, he or she must win more than 50 per cent of the valid vote. 3 For OSCE/ODIHR reports on previous elections in the Republic of Armenia (1996-2003), see http://www.osce.org/odihr-elections/14350.html
1

Changes in the political landscape affected the 2007 electoral competition. For this election, the Armenian Republican Party, ARF Dashnaktsutiun and the United Labour Party did not enter the election as a coalition, although they were partners in government, while the Orinats Yerkir (Law-based State) Party left the government coalition in 2006. New political forces emerged, notably the Prosperous Armenia Party, while others fell into abeyance. Prime Minister Andranik Margaryan, leader of the Republican Party, died suddenly on 25 March. Serge Sargsyan was named on 26 March to take on the party leadership functions, and on 4 April President Kocharyan appointed him as prime minister. Legal Framework The legislative framework for elections in Armenia consists mainly of the Constitution and the Election Code. The Code has been substantially
145

10

amended since the 2003 National Assembly elections, and provides a good basis for the conduct of democratic elections. However, gaps remain in the regulatory framework for elections, and there were also failures to implement certain existing legislative provisions. The Election Code guarantees State support and cooperation for campaigning on an equal basis. The formal campaign period begins after the registration of candidacies. The Code does not address what constitutes campaigning, and whether campaign activities or fundraising by election participants and third parties are permitted prior to the campaign period. The CEC rejected a complaint against early campaigning brought by an NGO against Orinats Yerkir. The CEC found that the distribution of a leaflet constituted campaigning, but indicated that the absence of a clear prohibition on early campaigning, and constitutional protections for political expression and assembly, prevented it from concluding that there had been a violation. The Constitution requires openness of political party and campaign finances, but deficiencies in disclosure, reporting and overall supervision were noted. The absence of clear prohibitions on early and indirect campaigning, and deficiencies in enforcing party and campaign finance regulations, leave scope for electoral contestants to exceed campaign finance limitations. This could subvert the intent of campaign finance limitations stipulated in the Election Code. The CEC has no competence to investigate whether a party/ candidate has failed to disclose relevant financial transactions outside the campaign fund a contestant must established. Examination of the available 2006 financial reports of political parties by the OSCE/ODIHR EOM indicated that they lacked detail and could not serve as a sufficient basis for monitoring campaign finance. It is also questionable whether the reported amounts are accurate: for example, Prosperous Armenia reported that it had no income, expenditures or property at all in 2006. The Election Code prohibits parties and candidates, during the official election campaign, from giving or promising goods and services to voters commonly referred to as vote buying. The statutory provision does not appear to require specific intent to influence a voter to constitute a violation. The OSCE/ODIHR EOM directly observed one episode of provision of goods by a political party that met the legal definition of prohibited conduct in an election campaign. Generally, the legal prohibition was not enforced. The
146

prosecutor-general informed the OSCE/ODIHR EOM that his office would act only in cases in which intent to influence voters could be demonstrated. During the campaign period substantial attention in the media to government activities included a prominent focus on Prime Minister Sargsyan. The manner in which his public appearances around the country were presented by the media, not clearly differentiating between his roles as prime minister and leader of the Republican Party, appeared to confirm the difficulty in applying legal provisions concerning political campaigning by officials. Election Administration The election administration comprises the CEC, 41 TECs (corresponding to the 41 majoritarian constituencies), and 1,923 Precinct Election Commissions (PECs). The CEC and TECs are permanent bodies, while PECs were formed by 27 April. The amended Election Code provides for a more balanced composition of election commissions: one member is nominated by the president, one each by the six parliamentary factions and the peoples deputy group (deputies elected as non-partisan), and one judicial servant. There is a hierarchy of appointment, each representative on the CEC nominating one member to each TEC, who in turn nominated a member to each of the PECs under that TEC. During the pre-election period the CEC made notable improvements in its efficiency and transparency of procedures. All necessary election preparations were made within the required timeframe. The CEC established a schedule of regular press briefings, and introduced on its website a chart on complaints it had considered. In accordance with amendments to the Election Code requiring publication of election results by precinct, the CEC introduced a networked computer system linking it to the TECs. TECs appeared to be well prepared for the elections and generally to be working in a collegial manner. However, the TEC leadership troikas (chairperson, deputy chairperson and secretary), although elected by the TEC, were dominated by the representatives of the Republican Party, ARF Dashnaktsutiun and appointees of the President. This challenges the spirit of balanced composition as intended by Election Code provisions. In two TECs, members acknowledged that the Orinats Yerkir-appointed member had been removed from the TEC troika because that party was now in opposition. Influence of local selfgovernment bodies over the work of TEC 17 (Artashat)
147

and TEC 19 (Yeghednadzor) appeared to breach the provisions for independence stated in the Election Code. PEC leadership troikas had a more diverse composition than TEC troikas. PECs were extensively trained for election day and provided with materials explaining election day procedures in detail. The CEC produced short TV films explaining election day procedures to voters, which were broadcast throughout the official campaign period. Election code amendments enacted in 2005 charged the police with compiling a centralized and computerized voter register. For these elections, additional efforts were made by the police and CEC as well as by local community leaders, political parties and NGOs to correct inaccuracies (mainly surplus names and voters registered at incorrect addresses). The police and the CEC repeatedly called through the media for public cooperation to correct the voter list, which could be checked on the CEC website or at polling station premises, and errors then reported to election authorities or via police hotlines. Candidate registration was inclusive. All twenty-four parties and one bloc that applied were registered by the CEC, and no individual candidate from any list was refused registration. After two parties withdrew their lists, twenty-two parties and one bloc were on the ballot for the proportional list contest. Of the 141 persons who submitted documents for registration as majoritarian candidates, 135 were registered by the TECs. Five withdrew before registration, and there was one refusal due to incomplete documentation. A small number of withdrawals after registration (commonly citing negligible prospects of winning), and two de-registrations (see below) resulted in a total of 119 candidates in the majoritarian contest - an average of just under three per constituency. No party sought to field a candidate in every constituency (only the Republican Party attempted a countrywide presence). Most parties decided to concentrate resources instead on the proportional election. There were seven constituencies with only one candidate, and eleven with only two candidates. The majoritarian contests reflected local rather than nationwide political dynamics. Complaints and Appeals The Election Code permits appeals to the courts against actions (or inaction) of election commissions. The CEC and TECs have responsibility under the Code to review actions by subordinate election commissions. There was a
148

discernible deficit in this regard due to evident passivity and lack of initiative by the electoral and other authorities responsible for upholding the regulatory framework, who stated that they would only take action upon receipt of a formal complaint. While complaints received by the CEC were handled with overall transparency, some of its official responses (these were not characterized as decisions) were not sufficiently reasoned. For example, in response to a complaint by Orinats Yerkir that a mayor had breached the requirement for provision of state-owned premises as campaign venues free of charge, the CEC confirmed the definition of state property as central government and not local self-government property.4 However, this was contrary to practice already widely in evidence during the campaign. A small number of complaints were filed with TECs, and none upheld. TEC and court decisions in some instances were arbitrary and inconsistent. A court ordered TEC 19 to deregister two candidates, on the basis of an application by a third candidate. However, another court rejected a complaint that TEC 39 should deregister a candidate (while not disputing the substance of the complaint) on the grounds that a rival candidate did not have competence to apply to court for a candidate's deregistration. The Election Code and provisions of the Civil Procedure Code on electionrelated disputes declare election-related first instance court decisions to be final and not subject to appeal, but in six decisions on complaints rendered on 3 May the court of first instance granted the right of appeal, citing different provisions of the Civil Procedure Code. Additionally, the constitutionality of Civil Procedure Code provisions has been challenged in the Constitutional Court. Campaign Environment In the official campaign period, vigorous campaigning by most parties and majoritarian candidates was discernible throughout the country. Municipal and community authorities, almost without exception, met their obligations to designate places for the display of campaign materials. Besides these designated spaces, and advertising on commercially rented installations, a permissive environment prevailed, with posters widely placed on public and private buildings and installations. There was a flexible approach towards the formal procedure whereby, on the basis of requests received and forwarded by the TECs, municipal and
149

community authorities should put venues for campaign meetings at the disposal of political parties and candidates on the basis of equality and free of charge. In instances where parties or candidates applied instead directly to the municipal and community authorities, this was apparently with the approval of the TECs. Most parties appeared to favour an approach of holding previously unannounced or short-notice rallies, without prohibitive action from the authorities. Highly visible and prevalent publicity to commemorate the fifteenth anniversary of the Armenian Army, sponsored by the Ministry of Defense, was launched prior to and ran throughout almost the entire campaign period. This was mainly visible in Yerevan, where about half the electorate resides. At a late stage in the campaign, the Republican Party campaign converged with the Army's anniversary campaign, with evident crossover of campaign messages and featured participants. The merging of the image of the party (whose leader was until recently the Minister of Defense) with the symbols and accomplishments of Local Government Law, Art. 70.2 the armed forces was evident.5 As a result, the separation between the ruling party and the State appeared to be less than distinct. The Russian-language newspaper Golos Armenii published two editorials negatively describing a conversation between an opposition party chairman and a diplomat, allegedly clandestinely recorded. The editorials contended that the opposition leader was seeking a negative assessment of the parliamentary elections by the international community. These events and subsequent public remarks by the president referring to the aforementioned comments as a serious criminal act, introduced an element of pressure into the election campaign environment.6 Although the authorities have yet to underscore that free expression and secrecy of private commu 5 This runs contrary to OSCE commitments. See OSCE Copenhagen Document, 1990, Art. 5: [A]mong those elements of justice which are essential to the full expression of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all human beings [is] [ Art. 5.4]: a clear separation between the States and political parties; in particular, political parties will not be merged with the State. 6 OSCE Copenhagen Document, 1990, Art. 7.7: [The participating States will] ensure that law and public policy work to permit political campaigning to be conducted in a fair and free atmosphere in which neither administrative action, violence nor intimidation bars the parties and the candidates from freely presenting their views

150

nication are protected by the Armenian Constitution, they have said that an investigation would be undertaken. Further information on the investigation is still pending. Widely circulating and apparently speculative comments about activities in preparation for election fraud could indicate mistrust and cynicism among the electorate. A person working for a majoritarian candidate in TEC 25 was arrested for vote buying on 9 May. The OSCE/ODIHR EOM also heard allegations that some voters were under pressure to vote for certain parties or candidates, for fear of consequences such as job dismissal. A candidate (and incumbent deputy) from Syunik region confirmed that workers at a large enterprise he owned were obliged to vote for him, but he characterized this as consistent with contemporary global corporate management styles. There were some violent episodes shortly before and during the official campaign period, but their connection to the elections, or to election rivalries, was unclear, and they did not appear to impact on the electoral environment countrywide. Media Environment The Election Code provides for airtime to all candidates based on equal conditions. Each registered party/bloc in the proportional contest was entitled to a maximum 60 and 120 minutes of free airtime and no more than 120 and 180 minutes of paid airtime on public television and radio respectively. The CEC allotted the sequence of appearances in free and paid airtime by lottery. Public media adhered to their obligations in a somewhat formalistic manner: public TV H1 decided that all free campaign slots could be broadcast daily as a bloc, in the time period set by the CEC but outside primetime viewing. Almost all parties and blocs used their free airtime. On 19 April a majoritarian independent candidate appeared during the free airtime allocated to a party. Instead of deregistering the party for breaching the Election Code prohibition on transfer of airtime to another contestant, the CEC issued a general warning. The country's leading private broadcasters offered to air paid political advertisements, while local TV stations limited paid spots mostly to majoritarian contests, if at all. The national broadcasters' advertising rates were criticized as prohibitively expensive by a number of contestants, and were high when compared to regular commercial rates.
151

Political and electoral events were extensively reflected in newscasts and current affairs programmes in the broadcast media.7 Many media outlets tried to cover a broad range of political subjects, and thus to comply with legal provisions requiring equal conditions. Most monitored TV channels, however, devoted the highest portion of political information in newscasts to the government and to the Republican Party, the ARF Dashnaktsutiun and Prosperous Armenia. The two public broadcasters (H1 television and Public Radio) mostly guaranteed access to the media for contestants. Public Radio offered balanced political coverage (both in time and tone). H1 covered a number of political subjects, with the government accounting for the highest portion (21 per cent of predominantly neutral and positive coverage). It was also the only broadcaster to pay most attention to the opposition Armenian People's Party (12 per cent). However, coverage of Orinats Yerkir questioned the channel's objectivity - H1 was the only television channel to present the first Golos Armenii editorial (see above) verbatim in its main news programme. Later it aired at least twice the president's public remarks referring to the party chairman's private comments. Notwithstanding the editorial freedom to inform the public about these events, H1 did not meet the basic journalistic standard of presenting a response from Orinats Yerkir. The four nationwide TV channels - H1 and the private channels H2, Armenia TV and ALM TV provided extensive coverage of the government (with 26 per cent on H2). All monitored private broadcasters dedicated most of their political news to the Republican Party (ALM TV and Armenia TV), Prosperous Armenia (H2, Shant TV and the highest portion in Kentron TV), or ARF Dashnaktsutiun (Yerkir Media). This coverage was positive and devoid of critical comment. Television coverage of the elections presented overtly positive and neutral information, minimizing any critical viewpoints. Only radio stations, mainly RFE/Radio Liberty, broadcast critical viewpoints voiced by different contestants and voters. The print media displayed a diversity of views, including critical views, although no single media source could be relied upon to present balanced coverage.
7 The OSCE/ODIHR EOM monitored seven television station, two radio stations and four newspapers, using quantitative and qualitative analysis, from 22 March through 10 May: H1 (public-service broadcaster), ALM TV, Armenia TV, H2,

152

The media generally respected a silence period that started 24 hours prior to the election day. Participation of Women Women are under-represented in political or public life in Armenia. In the outgoing government, one of sixteen ministers is a woman, and seven of 131 deputies in the outgoing parliament are women. The amended Election Code requires the inclusion of 15 per cent women for party/bloc lists in the proportional contest (as compared with 5 per cent in 2003), and in at least every tenth position in the lists. However, of the 119 candidates contesting the 41 majoritarian seats, only five were women (running in three constituencies). The visibility of female candidates in the electoral campaign was low. There are very few women in the election administration: two of nine CEC members, 15 per cent of TEC members and only three of 41 TEC chairpersons are women. Eleven TECs are all male. At PEC level, women are better represented: EOM observers reported 38 per cent women as members of PECs, including 23 per cent as chairpersons. Domestic and International Observers Fifty-two domestic observation groups observed election day. The CEC refused accreditation to ten NGOs, mainly because they did not meet the requirement that relevant activities were included in their statute, and deregistered one on the grounds that it violated the provision of nonpartisanship.8 Domestic observers were present in 82 per cent of polling stations visited by the IEOM during voting and during 89 per cent of counts. In addition to international organizations represented in the IEOM, the CEC accredited observers from the Executive Committee of the Commonwealth of Independent States and its Interparliamentary Assembly. A recent amendment to the Election Code limits access by international organizations wishing to observe elections in Armenia: the amendment requires

Kentron TV, Shant TV, Yerkir Media (TV channels); Public Radio, RFE/Radio Liberty (radio stations); Hayastani Hanrapetutyun (State-funded), Aravot, AZG, Haykakan Zhamanak (newspapers). Election Code, Art. 29
8

153

that international organizations must be explicitly invited by one of the state bodies (the President, National Assembly, Government and CEC). Election Day and Vote Count On election day, voting took place in a mostly calm atmosphere. The conduct of voting was evaluated as very good or good in 94 per cent of polling stations. In many cases where it was assessed as problematic this was due to overcrowding (14 per cent) and the maintenance of conditions for secrecy of voting with the open-front voting booths (deficiencies in this regard were observed in 17 per cent of polling stations). Overcrowding largely a consequence of challenging conditions at premises available to serve as polling stations, and poor weather in some parts of the country meaning that voters were unwilling to wait outside caused one PEC in TEC 30 (Vanadzor) to close the polling station some 30 minutes early, denying the possibility to vote to people who were waiting. Unauthorized persons were present in 17 per cent of polling stations. Problems of an apparently deliberate character were observed in TECs concentrated in parts of Aragatsotn, Armavir, Ararat, Gegharkunik, Lori and Vayots Dzor regions, leading to a higher prevalence of IEOM observers' negative assessments. People voting more than once were observed in polling stations in TECs 23 (Sevan) and 31 (Vanadzor-Alaverdi); an attempt by the PEC to conceal the same activity at a polling station in TEC 39 (Vayots Dzor) was observed. Outside one polling station in TEC 31 IEOM observers saw people having what appeared to be a false data page (including photograph) inserted into their passports, suggesting preparation for voter impersonation fraud. Vote buying was observed at another polling station in the same constituency. In a polling station in TEC 4 (Arabkir, Yerevan) a voter was observed taking a photograph of his marked ballot with his cellphone, an act consistent with a rumoured vote fraud scheme. The CEC had previously responded with a decision on 9 May banning the use of camera phones in voting booths. Among episodes of tension connected to the behaviour of party/candidate proxies or unauthorized persons, there were chaotic scenes at a polling station in TEC 29 when Prosperous Armenia representatives threatened the PEC and stole the ink pad used for the PEC stamp, causing voting to be temporarily suspended. Counting mostly was conducted procedurally correctly, but in a number of of polling stations (6 per cent) where the IEOM observed counting the voters choice on the ballot was either not declared or shown to those present
154

by the PEC chairperson, or the number of votes cast for contestants was not announced aloud. Nearly 20 per cent of PECs were observed to have difficulties compiling the protocols, and 8 per cent made significant procedural errors or omissions. In cases observed at TECs 13 (Erebuni, Yerevan), 19 (Vagharshapat), and 24, among others, PECs only completed protocols for the majoritarian when at the premises of the TEC, which is at best a lapse of procedure and at worst a way of facilitating results falsification. Deliberate falsification of results was directly observed at one polling station in TEC 16 (Masis), one in TEC 17 (Artashat) and two in TEC 29 (Spitak), where votes cast for smaller parties were redistributed to the piles of six major parties; a similar falsification was observed being attempted at a polling stations in TEC 11 (Shengavit, Yerevan) in the proportional contest and TEC 7 (MalatiaSebastia, Yerevan), in the majoritarian contest. Security bags with ballots brought from one PEC were observed to have been opened when they were delivered to TEC 13. While the IEOM does not have a complete impression of the results tabulation due to the slow rate of tabulation, although apparently within the legally prescribed timeframe, IEOM observers recorded procedural and technical errors. TECs should finish tabulation and reporting of results within 18 hours of the end of voting, i.e. by 1400 hours on 13 May, and some informed IEOM observers that they would not begin tabulation procedures until 0600 hours. This statement is also available in Armenian. However, the English version remains the only official document. MISSION INFORMATION & ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The OSCE/ODIHR opened its election observation mission in Yerevan on 21 March 2007 with 15 experts and 29 long-term observers deployed in the capital and around the country. On election day, 411 short-term observers were deployed in an International Election Observation Mission (IEOM), including 59 observers from the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (OSCE PA), 32 from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and 13 from the European Parliament (EP). In total, there were observers from 44 OSCE participating States. The IEOM observed the voting in over 1,150 and counting in 110 polling stations throughout the country (out of 1,923 polling stations
155

countrywide), the transfer of PEC results to TECs in 40 TECs and the tabulation of results in 30 TECs after polling stations closed. Ms. Tone Tingsgaard (Sweden), Vice-President of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and Head of the OSCE PA delegation, was appointed as Special Coordinator by the OSCE Chairman-in-Office to lead the OSCE short-term observers. Mr. Leo Platvoet (Netherlands) headed the delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, and Ms. Marie Anne Isler Bguin (France) headed the delegation of the European Parliament. Ambassador Boris Frlec (Slovenia) is Head of the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission. The IEOM wishes to thank the authorities of the Republic of Armenia for the invitation to observe the elections, the Central Election Commission for providing accreditation documents, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other state and local authorities for their assistance and cooperation. The IEOM also wishes to express appreciation to the OSCE Office in Yerevan for their support throughout the mission, and resident embassies of OSCE participating States and other international institutions for their cooperation and support. For further information, please contact: Ms. Urdur Gunnarsdottir, OSCE/ODIHR Spokesperson, in Warsaw (+ 48 22 520 0600), or Ms. Nicola Schmidt, Election Adviser, OSCE/ ODIHR, in Warsaw (+ 48 22 520 0600); Mr. Klas Bergman, Director of Communications, International Secretariat of the OSCE PA, in Copenhagen (+45 60 10 83 80); Mr. Bas Klein, PACE Secretariat, in Strasbourg (+33 662 2654); Mr. Pietro Ducci, Election Observation Service, Directorate-General for External Policies, European Parliament, in Brussels (+32 2 28 46 656). OSCE/ODIHR EOM Address (until 23 May 2007): 17/2, Ervand Kochar Street, Yerevan tel.: +374 (0)10 552399, 552499, 554399 fax: +374 (0)10 554299 email: office@odihr.am OSCE/ODIHR website: www.osce.org/odihr

156

Anexo 5

EU ELECTION OBSERVATION MISSION TO VENEZUELA PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS 2005 PRELIMINARY STATEMENT Caracas, 6 December 2005 Following an invitation of the National Electoral Council (CNE) to observe the Parliamentary Elections (National Assembly, Latin-American Parliament and Andean Parliament) of 4 December, the European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) was deployed in Venezuela on 07 November 2005. The Mission is led by Chief Observer Mr. Jos Albino Silva Peneda, Member of the European Parliament. In total, the EU EOM deployed 160 observers in 20 of the 24 states to follow and report on the electoral process in line with established EU methodology and the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation adopted under the auspices of the United Nations in October 2005. A Delegation of the European Parliament, led by Mr. Arunas Degutis, and including six MEPs, joined in the EU EOM on 1 December. This statement is issued before the process is completed; the EU EOM will remain in country until 21 December to observe the postelection period, including electoral complaints. A Final Report will be issued in February 2006. The EU EOM wishes to thank the CNE, the Venezuelan authorities and all the other actors for the excellent cooperation and availability demonstrated throughout its stay in Venezuela Preliminary Conclusions Wide sectors of the Venezuelan society do not have trust in the electoral process and in the independence of the electoral authority. The legal framework contains several inconsistencies that leave room for differing and contradictory interpretations. The disclosure of a computerized list of citizens indicating their political preference in the signature recollection process for the Presidential Recall
157

Referendum (so-called Maisanta Program) generates fear that the secrecy of the vote could be violated. The CNE, in a positive attempt to restore confidence in the electoral process, took significant steps to open the automated voting system to external scrutiny and to modify various aspects that were questioned by the opposition. The CNE decision to eliminate the fingerprint capturing devices from the voting process was timely, effective and constructive. The electoral campaign focused almost exclusively on the issue of distrust in the electoral process and lack of independence of the CNE. The debate on political party platforms was absent. Both State and private media monitored showed bias towards either of the two main political blocks. The EU EOM took note with surprise of the withdrawal of the majority of the opposition parties only four days before the electoral event. Election Day passed peacefully with a low turnout. While the observers noted several irregularities in the voting procedures, the manual audit of the voting receipts revealed a high reliability of the voting machines. These elections did not contribute to the reduction of the fracture in the Venezuelan society. In this sense, they represented a lost opportunity. PRELIMINARY FINDINGS Pre-Election Environment The EUEOM takes note of the fact that wide sectors of the Venezuelan society do not have confidence in the electoral process and in the electoral administration. This standpoint, which has its roots in the high polarization that divides the Venezuelan society, became especially apparent during the Recall Referendum in 2004 as well as in the run up to these elections. The disclosure of a database containing more than 12 million citizens' personal data and their political preference (the so called Maisanta Program) expressed during the signature collection for the Recall Referendum generated widespread fears that this information could be used for intimidation purposes and undue influence on voters. This fact played a significant role in favor of the abstention.
158

The opposition parties focused their campaign on the perceived lack of neutrality of the CNE and alleged dangers posed to the secrecy of the vote by an automated voting system which was meant to include the fingerprint capturing devices. Central electoral campaign themes such as economics and tax policies, the importance of social programs, the role of the private sector in the economy or environmental policies were missing from the political parties' public interventions. The prohibition of state funds for electoral campaign purposes was often mentioned by parties as a factor, which impeded a more public and transparent campaign. The use of state resources by pro-government parties to mobilize supporters was observed in Trujillo, Monagas, Anzotegui, Carabobo and Guarico. Violations of the provision for public officials to take part in the campaign was observed in nearly all States and committed by almost all main political parties. The parties included quotes from local officials in their captions as well as pictures of officials in their campaign posters including in some cases, of the President. The violations observed in the last phase of the campaign were mainly carried out by pro-government parties. Civil society organizations like Sumateand Ojo Electoral played, in different ways, a very important role in the elections. However, only Ojo Electoral sought and obtained accreditation to observe the elections. In a context of mistrust and extreme polarization, the EU EOM acknowledges the efforts made by the CNE to increase the political parties confidence in the process. These measures included reviews of various elements of the automated voting process such as the software of the electronic voting machines, the fingerprint capturing machines and of the results aggregation system, as well as the extension of the audit paper trail to encompass the manual recount of the voting receipts in 45% of the polling stations. The discovery of a design flaw in the software of the voting machines, with the consequent remote possibility to violate the secrecy of the vote was dealt with by the CNE in a timely and adequate manner. The possibility of endangerment of the secrecy of the vote was evaluated by EU EOM experts as remote. The breach of the secrecy of the vote could only be possible if the sequence of both the identification of the voters and the votes cast was reconstructed. This reconstruction would require access to three different dispersed sources of information by a qualified user. These sources are the memory of the voting
159

machines, the memory of the fingerprint capturing devices and the entire code of the encryption key (that was divided among the political parties and the CNE) used in the system to protect the voting data. The elimination of the fingerprint capturing devices from the voting process was a significant move aimed at restoring the confidence of the parties. It was therefore with surprise that the EU EOM took note at this stage of the withdrawal of the main opposition political parties from the electoral contest without any new additional motivation. Legal Framework The legal framework for the elections is composed of the Basic Law of Suffrage and Political Participation of 1998, the Constitution of 1999, the Electoral Statute of Public Power of 2000, the Basic Law of the Electoral Power of 2002. Due to the National Assembly's inability to find a qualified majority on the adoption of a new Basic Law, crucial aspects of the electoral process have not been harmonized with the provisions of the new Constitution 1999. These inconsistencies opened room for differing and contradictory interpretations of various aspects of the process (e.g. voter registration, CNE competences), and exemplified the already existing divide between opposing sectors of the society. The current composition of the CNE Steering Board is a contentious issue. Following the inability of the National Assembly to reach the required majority to elect the CNE Steering Board, the Supreme Court, availing itself of the extraordinary powers granted by the Constitution in case where the National Assembly is unable to take a decision, designated the Members of the Steering Board before the Recall Referendum. More recently, one of the members of the Steering Board was nominated by the Supreme Court under a procedure contradictory to the one used for the first extraordinary nomination of the Steering Board. The system of representation in force in Venezuela is described as one of personalized proportionality by the Basic Law of Suffrage and Political Participation of 1998. This ambiguous definition is used to designate a mixed member proportional system. The use of the electoral technique known as Morochas, which allows the duplication of parties in order to avoid the subtraction of the seats gained in the plurality-majority list from the proportional list, certainly defies the spirit of the Constitution, but it is
160

technically allowed by the mixed system of representation laid out in the Basic Law of Suffrage and Political Participation. The principle of the automated voting system is enshrined in Art. 154 of the Basic Law of Suffrage and Political Participation 1998 and in Art 33, Item 42 of the Basic Law of the Electoral Power of 2002. The current development and applications of the automated voting process have however surpassed in various aspects the legal framework. Election Administration The National Electoral Council (CNE) is an institution with significant human and technical resources. The CNE technically administered the process well, and its logistical preparations for the electoral event were adequate. Its performance was however tainted by the accusations of bias and partisanship that have accompanied its work since the past Recall Referendum process. In the election preparations the CNE demonstrated a clear willingness to meet the demands of the opposition parties to increase confidence on the process. Among the main steps taken to reduce the opposition concerns over the automated voting process, the CNE increased the number of polling stations to be audited from an initial 33% to 45% and reduced the use of the electronic voter lists to 2%. However, this was perceived by the opposition parties as insufficient. The security and transparency measures introduced in the automated voting process are in line with the most advanced international practice. The various types of system reviews put in place by the CNE represented and important opportunity to explain and review various aspects of the automated voting system to experts of political parties and observers. Apart from the paper trail audit on election day, there were four types of reviews that the EU EOM observed including of voting machines software and hardware, results aggregation software, voting machines assemblage and production, and election day simulation. Despite the fact that no proper audit procedures were agreed in advance, a significant disclosure of information was achieved. However, access to information for party experts could be further improved. The political parties were selective in presenting to the media the activities and the findings of the audit sessions. The voter register (Registro Electoral Permanente, hereinafter REP), has been the source of continuous debate and several allegations of illegitimate
161

1 1

entries. This is not a novelty in the Venezuelan elections; however, the sharp increase of registered voters before the Presidential Recall Referendum cast serious doubts on the composition and entries of the most recent REP. These suspicions were heightened in the pre-electoral period by the refusal of the CNE to make available the address of the voters to political parties due to an unclear constitutional data protection provision. However, political parties were given sufficient access to the voter register. Structural and long standing problems in the REP are likely to exist, and can only be solved in conjunction with the revision of the Identity Card program which is the basis for the voter registration system. Media Coverage The Venezuelan media display a great diversity of political opinions However, considered individually, the main media outlets only exceptionally referred to the various political actors in a manner which could be considered both fair and balanced. Most of the private media tended to offer more space to the views of the political forces critical of the Government, and when expressing their poli-tical preferences, they often disregarded basic journalistic principles. On the other hand, state-owned media should provide fair recognition to the views of all Venezuelans and therefore has strong obligations in terms of objectivity, fairness and impartiality. However, it did not fulfill these obligations. The tone of the coverage of opposition parties in the publicly owned media was significantly more negative than the one reserved to the parties in government. Furthermore, the intense promotion of government policies on the state media during the campaign worked as an indirect publicity of the parties in power. The excessive resort to cadenas (addresses to the nation simultaneously broadcast through all the nation's electronic media) which proliferated in the days prior to the elections could represent a breach of the campaign silence. The EU EOM notes that the frequent presence of the President on State TV and radio is an unusual practice and did not contribute to the improvement of the political climate. The Mission believes that the excessively inflammatory opinions encoun-tered in much of the Venezuelan media, especially after the withdrawal of most of the opposition parties' candidates, did not contribute to an informed and calm political atmosphere, but rather agitated further an
162

already tense public opinion which seems to grow increasingly tired and cynical about politics. The use of images featuring public officials for campaign purposes was widespread and must be condemned as a generalized, flagrant violation of CNE regulations on that matter. Furthemore, the excessive focus on parties and personalities given by the media in its coverage of the campaign has resulted in a striking scarcity of information about the platforms of the contesting parties. Election Day Polling stations opened on average between 7,00 and 8,00 am. The delays were mainly due to the late arrival of the staff and a general slowness in the opening procedures. In 70% of the polling stations observed there were missing polling officials replaced by political party agents, reserves or ordinary voters. The presence of the armed forces of Plan Repblicainside the polling stations was noted in 25% of the polling stations observed. This was contrary to the provision that allowed the security forces to be inside the voting centres but not inside the polling stations. The political party agents were observed in 70% of the polling stations visited. In 68% of these cases there were only agents from pro-government parties. Domestic observers were present in 6% of the polling stations observed. Their presence was observed in 18% of the polling stations where the EU EOM observed the audit of the count. The majority of the voters in the polling stations observed experienced problems with understanding the functioning of the voting machines and required assistance. In 41% of the cases observed there were voters unable to complete the process in the prescribed three minutes. This indicates both a lack of adequate voter information and training for election officials on the automated voting system. The assistance to the voters was often provided by the polling station staff, security forces and the political party agents, raising concerns about the secrecy of the vote. Campaign activities in favor of pro-Government parties were noted in the vicinity of a large number of the polling stations observed. The type of campaign activities observed included food distribution,cars with megaphones and posters, information stands and provision of transport for voters. Few
163

cases of intimidation were observed, with party members asking voters to sign and thumbprint on a piece of paper that they had voted and who they had voted for. The polling hours were extended by the CNE throughout the country. The motivation for this decision was the delays in the opening and the bad weather conditions. This led to confusion and allegations of attempts from progovernment parties to boost the turnout. The paper trail audit (manual recount) of the electronic count was observed in 75 different polling centers. Despite a lenghty implementation of the audit procedure, the results indicated a clear reliability of the results, with few cases of discrepancy observed between the number of voters marked in the voter register and those counted by the machine and between the paper receipts and the votes recorded in the voting machines. The general conclusion of the observers was that the voting machines seemed very reliable. The aggregation of results proceeded with high speed. The announced preliminary results cover almost 90% of the results. The preliminary turnout announced by the CNE is of 25%. However, there is no clarity on the level of invalid votes that oscillate between 5 and 10%. Preliminary Recommendations The legal framework that governs the electoral process must be harmonized with the constitutional provisions on the elections. The National Assembly should appoint a CNE Steering Board composed of independent professionals of various extractions that enjoy the trust of all the sectors of society. The prohibition of public funding to parties for the electoral campaign should be reconsidered. The electronic voting system should be audited by an independent institution. The REP should be audited in conjunction with the ID register by an independent institution. The CNE should launch as soon as possible training and civic education programs aimed at familiarizing electoral officials and the electorate with the electronic voting procedures.
164

For further information please contact: Press Officer, Ms. Cathy Giorgetti, Tel. (+58) 0414 6857046 European Union Election Observation Mission to Venezuela 2005 Eurobuilding, Final Calle La Guairita, Chuao - Caracas Office Telefhone: 212 993 8222 e-mail: info@eueomvenezuela.org website:www.eueomvenezuela.org

165

166

Anexo 6

EUROPEAN UNION
ELECTION OBSERVATION MISSION WEST BANK & GAZA 2006 STATEMENT OF PRELIMINARY CONCLUSIONS AND FINDINGS Open and well-run parliamentary elections strengthen Palestinian commitment to democratic institutions Jerusalem, 26 January 2006 The European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) has been present in the West Bank and Gaza since 13 December 2005 following an invitation from the Central Election Commission (CEC) of Palestine. The Mission is led by Chief Observer Ms. Vronique De Keyser from Belgium, Member of the European Parliament. In total, the EU EOM deployed over 185 observers from 23 EU Member States as well as Norway, Switzerland and Romania. The observers were deployed throughout the West Bank and Gaza to assess the whole electoral process in the light of international principles for genuine democratic elections. The EU EOM was joined by a 27-member delegation from the European Parliament, the largest elected parliamentary observer delegation, led by Mr Edward McMillan-Scott MEP of the United Kingdom, who endorse this Statement. On election day, the observers visited over 800 polling stations in 14 of the 16 electoral districts in West Bank and Gaza to observe voting and counting. The EU EOM is currently observing the conclusion of the counting and result tabulation procedures and will remain in country to observe all aspects of the post-election process. PRELIMINARY CONCLUSIONS The 25 January elections to the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) have so far marked another important milestone in the building of democratic institutions. These elections saw impressive voter partici 167

pation in an open and fairly-contested electoral process that was efficiently administered by a professional and independent Palestinian Central Elections Commission (CEC). As with the 2005 presidential election, the Palestinian people have demonstrated an overwhelming commitment to determine their political future via democratic means, in spite of the uncertain conditions in which the elections took place: a background of delay, unacceptable levels of precampaign violence and an occupation that placed restrictions on the exercise of fundamental freedoms related to elections. Voting on 25 January proceeded smoothly and peacefully with an impressive turnout of 77 per cent of the total number of registered voters. Procedures were well-followed by CEC polling staff and domestic observers and candidate representatives were present in almost all polling stations. The procedures for counting were similarly well-run. Campaigning was seen to take place both inside and outside of many polling stations, often vigorously and in contravention of the law. There were numerous shortcomings with the voting arrangements in East Jerusalem. The CEC commands a high degree of public confidence. It maintained integrity in the face of intimidation, including attacks on its buildings and threats against staff, that sought to influence the candidate registration process. These attempts to pressure the election administration, all of which have gone unpunished, reflect a culture of impunity for militant groups that the Palestinian leadership must demonstrate more determination to end. Candidates from across the whole political spectrum participated in the elections. The campaign took place in a generally calm and positive atmosphere, with an absence of provocative rhetoric. However, restrictions by Israeli forces on the freedom of movement by candidates and voters reduced the scope for genuinely free elections. Arbitrary restrictions on campaigning and the freedom of assembly by candidates in East Jerusalem led to a number of arrests and prevented a proper campaign from taking place in the city. The instability and inter-factional violence which at times threatened to prevent the holding of elections, especially in Gaza, were unacceptable and have no place in a democratic process. In addition, threats made against international observers limited the levels of deployment that could be undertaken. However, the security situation improved during the two weeks ahead of election day.
168

Despite established precedent and agreement that there is a right to vote by Palestinians resident in East Jerusalem, delays by the Israeli authorities in deciding whether voting would be allowed to take place within the city led to uncertainty which affected the whole election process. Although the decision to allow voting was welcome, it came very late and - as with earlier elections - electoral arrangements failed to provide reasonable, equal or proper conditions for voters from East Jerusalem. The provision for early voting by members of the Palestinian security forces reflected efforts to ensure greater stability on election day. However, repeated attempts by the Ministry of Interior and other Palestinian Authority (PA) institutions to change these voting arrangements represented an inappropriate level of political interference in the election administration. The early voting itself generally went well but with concerns related to transparency and the high proportion of assisted voting. All electoral preparations by the CEC were finalised in good time, with the exception of delays caused by external factors beyond its control such as the voting arrangements over East Jerusalem. However, the transparency of the CEC decision-making processes needs to be further increased. Useful steps to improve the reliability of the voter register have been taken since the 2005 presidential election. The absence of Israeli permission to allow a register of voters in East Jerusalem was a serious obstacle to the process. The legal framework provided an effective basis for the conduct of democratic elections but lacks an appropriate enforcement mechanism and, while an innovative voluntary Code of Conduct for candidates enjoyed cross-party support, there were limited means to ensure Candidates benefited from equal access to free airtime provided by public broadcasters in accordance with CEC regulations. In contrast, the news coverage by Palestinian TV was imbalanced in favour of Fatah while some private broadcasters offered unequal fees to Civil society organisations played an important role in these elections, especially in relation to election observation, the delivery of voter education and the development and oversight of the Code of Conduct for campaigning. Over 22 per cent of the candidates on national lists were women, a positive reflection of the new legal requirement to include a proportion
169

of women candidates; however, only 15 women (3.6 per cent) took part as candidates in the district election, where there was no quota. These elections were also held under an occupation that, by its nature, cannot support the sustainable development of a democratic state. However, the Israeli authorities did take measures to facilitate the electoral process. These elections were notable for the participation of candidates linked to extremist or radical groups that have advocated violence as a means to solving the problems in the Middle East. It is hoped that this participation is an indication of the movement of such groups towards engaging in a truly democratic process, which would be in fundamental contradiction with violent activity.

The final assessment of these elections will depend, in part, on the completion of counting and tabulation, the announcement of results by the CEC, and the complaints and appeals process. The EU EOM will remain in country to observe all aspects of the post-election process and will publish a final report, containing detailed recommendations to improve the election process, within two months of the completion of the entire process. PRELIMINARY FINDINGS Background These second elections for the PLC were widely seen as a crucial step towards Palestinian institution building foreseen in the Road Map for a permanent solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The elections follow the January 2005 election of the President of the PA and a series of municipal elections that have been held since December 2004. Elections for the PLC, which last took place in January 1996, were initially envisaged to be held in 2000, but have been delayed a number of times. The fact that these elections have taken place is an important milestone in ensuring the new PLC will have greater credibility and a renewed popular mandate. During this election process, many political events, some external to the election process, created uncertainty as to whether or not the election would go ahead. In particular, divisions within the Fatah ruling political party, coupled with pressures against the CEC and intransigence over the highly significant issue of voting in East Jerusalem created real possibilities that the elections would again be postponed. Commendably, repeated public commitments from
170

key actors, significantly President Abbas, that the elections must be held as scheduled led to negotiated settlement of most problematic issues. More widely, the general level of instability and inter-factional violence, particularly in Gaza, raised concerns as to whether conditions would permit the holding of democratic elections. Significantly, steps were taken by a number of actors, including militia groups, to ensure that the security situation improved over the campaign period which created a much calmer environment in the immediate run-up to election day. Threats against international observers, including those from the EU EOM, were made during the campaign period. All international observer groups, the CEC and some militia groups strongly condemned the threats that, to a degree, restricted the level by which observation could take place in certain areas. Legal Framework A new election law, adopted in June 2005, provided a basis for the conduct of democratic elections. The law introduced a mixed electoral system whereby an increased number of seats are contested under separate proportional and majoritarian contests. In a positive development, the law has strengthened voter registration procedures, including a prohibition on the use of the civil register for electoral purposes, and established a requirement for a minimum proportion of women as candidates on national lists. However, the law also contains a number of shortcomings that should be addressed ahead of future elections. Significantly, the CEC lacks any enforcement powers or sanctions where the law is violated. In practice, this meant that the CEC used informal channels to address complaints it received, regardless of the seriousness of the allegation. Moreover, there are no effective or transparent procedures for the handling of complaints and the CEC is under no requirement to publish details of the complaints it receives. The legal framework also lacks detailed regulation of campaign financing and criteria for political party registration. There should be a review of whether absentee voting should be allowed for those unable to vote in their designated polling station on election day. Election Administration The CEC and its Secretariat acted in an independent, professional and technically proficient manner that ensured all election arrangements within its control were organised in good time ahead of election day. The CEC showed a strong commitment to running the election to schedule and, in
171

particular, achieved notable success in providing training of its 18,700 staff, re-organising its district and polling management structures and in running an effective and inclusive voter education programme in association with a number of civil society actors. Moreover, the CEC showed itself to be capable of efficiently implementing arrangements for voting in East Jerusalem and for security forces that were agreed to at late notice. Public confidence and trust in the independence of the CEC is deservedly high but its integrity and authority were challenged by direct attempts to influence its decision-making when its offices in several locations were taken over by armed groups during the candidate registration process and in the early stages of the campaign. Such acts of violence, intimidation or pressure against the CEC and its staff are unacceptable within a democratic election and yet, regrettably, the perpetrators of these acts - many of whom have links to Fatah - have gone unpunished, reflecting a wider culture of impunity amongst members of militia groups in Palestine in their use of threats and violence. Separately, unwarranted political interference in the work of the CEC came from the Ministry of Interior which sought to change the arrangements for early voting by over 58,000 security forces so that voting would take place in barracks rather in the locations where they were registered to vote, as according to the law. Ensuring opportunities for voting by security forces had been a problematic issue in previous elections and the solution reached, whereby votes were cast in special polling centres in each district over 21-23 January, was an effective arrangement. There was an open process for the nomination and registration of individual district candidates and candidates on national lists. A total of 728 candidates were included in the final lists of candidates and, in contrast to the 1996 PLC elections, provided voters with a real choice from across the Palestinian political spectrum. In a questionable decision, the Electoral Appeals Court (EAC) overturned a CEC decision and allowed an extension of the candidate registration period which allowed Fatah to merge two separate lists that had been submitted by its members into a single national list. The EU EOM is aware that a number of complaints have been made to the CEC during the campaign period. The absence of a formal, transparent mechanism for handling complaints and acting against violations of the law has meant that, in most cases, no discernible action has been taken to enforce the law, although in two relatively minor cases, complaints have been passed
172

to the Prosecutor's Office for consideration. The most serious complaint related to a letter from the Chief of Civil Police of the West Bank, sent to all district police chiefs, instructed police to vote in favour of the ruling party. This complaint was addressed only through an informal discussion between the CEC and the Office of the PA President. Voter Registration A total of 1,332,499 voters were registered for this election, an impressive 21 per cent increase on the number of voters registered for the January 2005 presidential election that reflected the effective steps taken by the CEC to improve the accuracy of the voter register. Regrettably, public access to the final register of voters was restricted and it was not published by the CEC until polling day, although it was made available on request to candidates. It is unfortunate that, for security reasons, the voter register for the security forces was not made available at any stage thus preventing any independent crosschecking of the persons for double registration. The registration of an estimated 123,000 voters in East Jerusalem was not permitted by the Israeli authorities. Campaign The campaign period was generally calm and saw a stabilisation in the general security situation that enabled active campaigning to take place. Overall, the campaign was notable for its positive tone and there were no reports of provocative rhetoric or hate speech. In comparison to the 1996 and 2005 elections, there was a notable drop in reports of the use of state resources by candidates in campaign. Despite many large rallies, there was no major incident related to the campaign, although two activists were killed in events that may have been election-related. There are several complaints that campaigning occurred inside mosques. An innovative and useful Code of Conduct for campaigning was developed by civil society and, although voluntary, was supported by all eleven national lists. However, the campaign was marked by restrictions on the exercise of fundamental freedoms that are related to elections caused by the continued occupation of Palestinian Territories. In particular, restrictions on the freedom of movement prevented many candidates from being able to undertake a national campaign even when they attempted to seek travel permits. The freedoms of assembly and association of Palestinian candidates and activists were also challenged in East Jerusalem, where arbitrary restrictions on
173

campaigning imposed by Israeli authorities led to a number of arrests. There were several reports also of arrests of campaign activists by the Israeli Defence Forces in the West Bank. In contrast and despite the levels of instability, there were few reports of similar restrictions or other problems with campaigning in Gaza except for the difficulties in travel between the West Bank and Gaza. Media Environment A broad and flourishing range of media outlets operate in the West Bank and Gaza. Television is the most important source of political information. In addition to local stations, the main Pan-Arabic Networks are widely viewed. While the first week of the campaign received relatively limited coverage, reflecting its low-key nature, extensive coverage of the election was provided during the two weeks prior to election day. The official electronic media (Palestine TV and Voice of Palestine radio) provided electoral lists and candidates with extensive free airtime in accordance with the Election Law. Palestine TV, in agreement with the CEC, broadcast an hour-long talk show for each national list, campaign spots for national lists (up to 10 minutes) and district candidates (up to two minutes), plus a final three hour debate with representatives of the whole 11 lists. No reports of complaints on the allocation of free airtime were received. All of these programmes provided voters with a genuine opportunity to compare platforms and candidates. Palestine TV offered only modest election coverage in its news and current affair programmes. A bias in favour of the ruling party Fatah (59 per cent of the coverage) was noted. Voice of Palestine allotted 56 per cent of its news and current affair coverage to Fatah and 31 per cent to Change and Reform. However, the airtime devoted to Change and Reform was often negative in tone. Many lists and prominent candidates purchased space on private media. Problems with the rates, which were not announced in advance and were not equal for all candidates, undermined the principle of equal treatment for all contestants. The private TV station Watan TV favoured the Independent Palestine list, providing it with 60% of its political news and current affair coverage. The private radio station, Amwaj, devoted most of its coverage to independent candidates (58 per cent), Fatah (17 per cent) and Alternative (15 per cent). On the eve of the elections, the Minister of Interior shut down Al 174

Aqsa TV, a Gaza based private TV station affiliated to Change and Reform, on the basis that it was broadcasting without a license. The print media offered space to all lists, presenting various articles on political parties and candidates. The state funded newspaper Al-Haya alJadeeda favoured the ruling party. Participation of Women Women made up 47 per cent of registered voters, a slight increase from the 2005 presidential election. In a positive development, the election law was amended to introduce a quota for women on the national party lists. Each list had to have a woman candidate in positions 3, 7 and 12 on the list (or higher), and then one in every five positions that followed. This resulted in 22 per cent of candidates on the national lists being women. However, for the district elections, where there was no quota, only 15 of the 414 candidates were women. The CEC produced few civic education materials that specifically targeted women. However, a number of NGOs carried out civic and voter education that was specifically targeted at women. In Palestinian society, many women are involved in politics and in political parties. However, not many leadership positions are held by women. Few of the women district candidates managed to stand as official party candidates, so ran as independents, which is likely to make it difficult for them to be elected. The media coverage of women candidates saw a slight under-representation in terms of time. In part this reflects the parties' decisions on which candidates they put forward to the media. In the polling stations that were observed, women made up over one third of polling station staff. Civil Society Civil society is vibrant and active, and this was reflected in its participation in election observation. According to the CEC, a total of 254 domestic organisations were accredited to observe the elections, which in turn accredited over 17,000 national observers. In addition to election observation, civil society organisations also played a leading role in civic and voter education, in cooperation with the CEC and media outlets. Specific attention was paid to areas where literacy and political awareness was low. Civil society organisations also organised candidate training programmes, as well as developing and monitoring a Code of Conduct for the campaign.
175

Voting in East Jerusalem The right to vote by Palestinians resident in East Jerusalem is established by the 1995 Oslo agreement and the precedents of the 1996 and 2005 elections. Initially, the Israeli authorities refused to allow voting to take place inside East Jerusalem to demonstrate their condemnation of the participation of candidates linked to extremist groups. As such a policy might otherwise have caused the elections to be postponed, the EU EOM welcomed the 15 January decision of Israel to allow for limited voting as a decisive step towards ending the uncertainty over the election, even though it came at a late stage in the electoral process. The voting arrangements that were permitted - whereby only around five per cent of Palestinians resident in East Jerusalem are able to cast their votes in the city at six specific postal offices while the majority must cross into the West Bank to vote - fail to provide reasonable, equal or proper conditions. In particular, the procedures at the post offices again failed to provide secrecy of the ballot, and were administered by Israeli postal workers rather than trained CEC staff. The inadequacy of the locations also caused long queues and slow voting procedures that led to a two-hour extension of voting. EU EOM observers rated the voting conditions in all six East Jerusalem post offices as 'bad' or 'very bad' and noted that those voters who crossed into the West Bank were hampered by checkpoints and roadblocks even though steps had been taken by the Israeli authorities to provide greater flow of movement. Polling The Election Day proceeded smoothly and peacefully, with an impressive turnout of almost 77 per cent of the total number of registered voters. There was an even higher turnout in Gaza of 81 per cent. The vast majority of polling stations opened on time, all electoral materials having been delivered the day prior to the elections. EU EOM observers evaluated the voting process as 'good' or 'very good' in over 95% of the polling stations they visited and the secrecy of the vote was respected in almost all polling stations observed except in East Jerusalem. Polling staff were well trained and followed the established procedures closely. As in 2005, there was a high proportion of voters who sought assistance to help them vote. Representatives from different candidates and lists were present in over 98 per cent of polling stations observed. Domestic observers were present in over 60 per cent. Observers reported widespread and vigorous campaigning by candidates at many polling stations, although it was not reported as being antagonistic
176

or intimidating. However, the presence of campaign activists distributing election materials in and around polling centres was unlawful and steps should have been taken to prevent it from occurring. EU EOM observers did not report intimidation of electoral staff. Provision of security around polling centres by the Palestinian security forces was adequate and unimposing. EU EOM Observers also reported that the close of voting and the counting of votes also proceeded well, with 93 per cent of polling stations visited being rated as 'very good'. However, over 10 per cent of polling stations visited did not immediately display the election results as required by law. Early voting by security forces between 21 to 23 January was marked by an extremely high level of turnout of 92 per cent. A surprising number of security personnel requested assistance to help with their voting on the grounds of illiteracy or disability, raising concerns of possible undue pressure on the voter and a lack of secrecy of the ballot. This led to the CEC temporarily suspending the right to assisted voting by members of the security forces to counteract the potential for abuse. Sensitive materials from the early voting were secured satisfactorily. Remarks by the EU EOM Chief Observer and the Head of the European Parliament Delegation at the press conference on 26 January 2006: The Palestinian Legislative Council elections have so far marked another important milestone in the building of democratic institutions. This is the conclusion of the 185-strong European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) and the 27-strong European Parliament delegation. Yesterday, voters came out in impressive numbers to cast their ballot in a peaceful and enthusiastic manner. The Palestinian leadership took the risk of going ahead with these elections despite widespread opposition in order to give priority to democracy said Vronique de Keyser MEP, Chief Observer of the EU EOM. She added: The people of Palestine responded to this opportunity with great enthusiasm and dignity by coming out in large numbers to cast their ballot in a peaceful manner. I hope that the winners and losers of these elections will accept the results with the same political maturity that their supporters showed on election day. The conduct of these elections has provided a model for the wider Arab region and has clearly demonstrated the commitment of the Palestinian people
177

12

to democracy, said Edward McMillan-Scott MEP, Vice-President of the European Parliament and Chairman of the EP delegation, which endorsed the preliminary findings and conclusions of the EU EOM and will report to Parliament in due course. The parliamentary dimension of the EU's neighbourhood has thus been further strengthened, which is also important for the Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly in which members of the Palestinian Legislative Council and the Knesset uniquely participate together. The EU EOM wishes to express it appreciation to the CEC and other Palestinian bodies as well as to authorities of the Government of Israel, for their cooperation and assistance during the course of the observation. The EU EOM is also grateful to the European Commission Technical and Assistance Office for West Bank and Gaza and to the International Organisation for Migration for their operational support throughout. For further information, please contact: Mr. Richard Chambers, EU EOM Deputy Chief Observer Tel: +972 54 698 5327 Mr. Mathias Eick, EU EOM Spokesperson, Tel: +972 54 697 9287

178

Anexo 7

STATEMENT OF PRELIMINARY FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS ELECTIONS FAIL TO MEET HOPES AND EXPECTATIONS OF THE NIGERIAN PEOPLE AND FALL FAR SHORT OF BASIC INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS Abuja, 23 April 2007 The European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) has been present in Nigeria since 14 March 2007, following an invitation from the Nigerian authorities. The Mission is led by Chief Observer, Mr. Max van den Berg, Member of the European Parliament. In total, the EU EOM deployed over 150 observers from 21 EU Member States as well as Switzerland and Norway. The observers were deployed to all states and the Federal Capital Territory, except Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers states as a result of security concerns. The Mission assessed the conduct of the elections in accordance with international standards for democratic elections, and adhered to the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observers, commemorated at the United Nations in October 2005. Over the election day periods, the EU EOM was joined by a delegation from the European Parliament, led by Mr. John Attard-Montalto and Mr. Vittorio Agnoletto, who fully endorse this statement. The EU EOM is currently observing the result tabulation process, and will remain in country to observe all aspects of the post-election process. A final report, containing detailed recommendations for the future, will be published within two months of the conclusion of the entire election process. The EU EOM is independent in its findings and conclusions from EU Member States, the European Parliament and the European Commission. Preliminary Conclusions The 2007 State and Federal elections have fallen far short of basic international and regional standards for democratic elections. They were marred by poor organisation, lack of essential transparency, widespread procedural irregularities, significant evidence of fraud, particularly during the
179

result collation process, voter disenfranchisement at different stages of the process, lack of equal conditions for contestants and numerous incidents of violence. As a result, the elections have not lived up to the hopes and expectations of the Nigerian people and the process cannot be considered to have been credible. This is all the more regrettable since they were held in an improved atmosphere in which freedoms of expression and assembly were broadly respected during campaigning, the judiciary played a generally positive and independent role and the people showed remarkable commitment to democracy, eagerly engaging in the electoral process and waiting patiently to vote in often very difficult circumstances. On election day for the State elections, polling started late throughout the country due to the late arrival of polling officials and materials and in several areas did not take place at all. Polling stations were generally under staffed with officials who were under trained. Procedures were often not followed correctly and the secrecy of the ballot was not guaranteed in the majority of polling stations visited by EU observers. However party agents were seen in almost all polling stations visited with domestic observers present in close to half. Incidents of hijacking of ballot boxes were witnessed by EU observers, who reported widespread irregularities and significant evidence of fraud, particularly during the result collation process, which completely lacked transparency due to the fact that polling station results were not publicly displayed at any level of the election administration throughout the country. Following INEC's decision to order re-runs in two states and undertake investigations in four other states, serious consideration should now also be given to initiating investigations in a number of other states where serious concerns have been raised by political parties, civil society and the media about the conduct of elections. On election day for the federal elections, polling material again arrived late and incomplete at many polling stations observed, resulting in significant delays in opening. Several National Assembly elections had to be postponed due to the incorrect printing of ballot papers, and at times there were insufficient numbers of presidential ballot papers. Party agents were again seen in almost all polling stations visited with domestic observers present in close to half. A heavier security presence helped contribute to a reduction in violent incidents. Again, polling procedures were often not followed correctly and the secrecy of the vote was not guaranteed in the majority of polling stations observed. EU observers witnessed examples of ballot box stuffing, alteration of official result forms, stealing of sensitive polling materials, vote
180

buying and under age voting. Despite assurances by INEC, polling station result forms were not displayed at polling stations. Violence has been a major issue of concern and incidents increased as the elections drew nearer. Credible reports indicate that at least 200 people, including candidates and police were killed in election related incidents, which is unacceptable with respect to right to life and the democratic process. The continuing and widespread use of thugs by a number of political parties created a significant degree of fear and intimidation. Despite welcomed and repeated messages from security agencies showing a tolerance zero policy towards political violence, the security agencies, INEC and political parties did not appear to take decisive steps to address the situation and hold perpetrators to account. Several disputes relating, in particular, to the powers and functions of INEC and the nomination, substitution and disqualification of candidates brought the judiciary into centre stage in the electoral process. In a welcome development that made a positive contribution to the electoral process, the Judiciary generally acted impartially. However, the lack of adequate procedures and time limits for initiation and adjudications of complaints and appeals prior to election day resulted in a number of disputes being dealt with by the courts just few days before the elections. Some remained pending until after the election. In a further positive development the Courts of Appeal established mechanisms to simplify and ensure timely determination of post-election petitions. The Electoral Act 2006 contains improvements in comparison to the Electoral Act 2002, in particular some measures to strengthen the independence of INEC. However, full independence of INEC from the executive was not established due to the fact that Presidential involvement in the appointment of INEC Commissions was retained. Significantly, fundamental transparency requirements, in particular for the collation and publication of results requiring polling station results to be publicly displayed at all levels of the counting and collation processes were not included, leaving the electoral process wide open to fraud. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which was financially dependent on the executive, did not prepare well for the elections and experienced widespread lack of confidence among election stakeholders in relation

181

to its capacity and impartiality. Deadlines were missed throughout the pre-election period and it lacked transparency in its decisions and conduct. INEC was selective and inconsistent in the application and enforcement of electoral legislation. Training of polling staff started late, was of poor quality and in some areas did not take place at all. Engagement with political parties and civil society was poor. Overall, civic and voter education was very limited and ineffective. The voter registration exercise conducted by INEC was marred by delays due to a lack of available direct data capturing machines, technical break downs and establishment of illegal voter registration centres. The quality of the final voter register was poor and included under age voters, double entries, missing and blurred pictures of voters. The voter register was not displayed at local level as required by the law and was only partly posted prior to election day for orientation purposes only. Permanent voter registration cards were not issued due to the late publication of the final voter register. The pre-election period saw a vigorous campaign throughout the country, particularly in states where there was the prospect of a change in power. However, a lack of transparency and accountability in campaign spending, together with a lack of prohibition on use of state resources gave advantage to political parties in power at the state and federal level, meant there was an uneven playing field for candidates and parties. Payment to potential voters was both witnessed by EU observers and admitted by political parties. There is a vibrant and expanding media environment in Nigeria. Presidential contestants and their parties were given equal access to discussion programmes aired in state as well as private broadcast media, facilitating informed choices of voters. However, there was a failure to adhere to the legal requirements by state owned media which showed bias in favour of the incumbent party, and more generally by broadcast media which focused on a small number of parties only. Journalists were able to operate in an environment of relative freedom, given systematic weakness that characterise the media sector. Civil society organisations mounted a comprehensive observation exercise. INEC unnecessarily delayed the accreditation of international and domestic election observers which restricted the oversight role they could play. Most domestic observer groups only received accreditation cards on the day before the state elections, and then in insufficient numbers. Screening of domestic observer organisations was undertaken by the State Security Services.
182

Despite strong commitments from INEC during the pre electoral period, significant efforts by civil society and measures by some political parties to wave nomination fees for female candidates, women remain underrepresented as candidates and within the electoral administration. The high levels of poverty, illiteracy and lack of access to basic needs, including education has an impact on the conduct of elections. Reaching the Millennium Development Goals should therefore be a key aspect of the consolidation of democracy as well as contributing towards improving social justice and economic development. In addition, increased international support should be directed towards good governance and democratisation, particularly through civil society organisations. The EU EOM strongly urges all political leaders to demonstrate responsibility in calling for calm, and for all political contestants to use the complaints and appeals mechanisms outlined in the election legislation if they have complaints about any aspects of the electoral process. The relevant authorities should urgently, thoroughly and transparently investigate any allegations of irregularities that are brought to their attention and take immediate action to ensure redress where appropriate. In order for the citizens of Nigeria to have trust and confidence in the political and electoral process, urgent remedial action by the relevant authorities and stakeholders is necessary to restore the conditions for credible and transparent elections to be held. In particular, concrete steps need to be taken to establish a truly independent and capable election administration, the atmosphere of impunity for electoral violations must cease, executive immunity should be removed, and political will must be demonstrated by parties at both federal and state levels to end the practice of hiring thugs to perpetrate electoral violence. PRELIMINARY FINDINGS Background The 2007 general elections are the third such elections to be held since the transition from military to civilian rule in 1999 and are widely considered to be a crucial test of the commitment of the Nigerian authorities to strengthening democracy. For the first time since independence, the elections
183

should see power transferred from one civilian President to another. They will also have a significant impact on the potential to find a solution for the serious problems of internal security and national cohesion. Following the problematic conduct of the 2003 elections, the 2007 elections provided an opportunity to strengthen public confidence in the electoral and wider democratic process. During the 14 April elections, Nigerians voted for 36 State Governors and 990 Legislators in the 36 State Houses of Assembly. On 21 April, elections were held for the President, 109 Members of the Senate and 360 Members of the House of Representatives. The elections were conducted using the simple majority system, except for the presidential election, where at least 25 per cent in at least two thirds of states had to be achieved, and the gubernatorial elections where at least 25 per cent in at least two thirds of local government areas in a state had to be reached. Nigeria has ratified the most prominent treaties related to human rights, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights, which contain standards relating to the conduct of democratic elections, as well as the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). These international provisions are binding. Nigeria also has additional commitments to good governance, human rights and the rule of law under the framework of the New Partnership for Africa's development (NEPAD) and the Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Legal framework These elections are regulated by the 1999 Constitution, and new Electoral Act adopted in 2006, as well as regulations and guidelines issued by INEC. The Electoral Act 2006 is an improvement over the Electoral Act 2002 which regulated the conduct of the 2003 general elections. In particular, it contains measures to strengthen the independence of INEC, including appointment of the Secretary by INEC and the creation of a fund to provide INEC with financial independence. However, this was not established for the 2007 elections. The Electoral Act 2006 also clearly outlines the procedures and timeline of the voter registration exercise and is more inclusive in relation to the distribution of grants for political parties.
184

However, a number of problems were not addressed in the Electoral Act 2006, in particular relating to the independence of INEC. The President continues to have involvement in the appointment of INEC Commissioners. At the federal level, all Commissioners are still appointed by the President, after consultations with the Council of State and confirmation by the Senate, and at the state level, all 37 Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) are appointed directly by the President. Other significant concerns include a lack of requirement for results to be displayed at the polling station level and for a breakdown of polling station results to be displayed at all superior levels of the election administration, a lack of adequate procedures for the handling of complaints and appeals before election day, and a lack of time limits for the publication of results and for the determination of election petitions. The Electoral Act 2006 is also silent on a number of important issues. Significantly, there is no prohibition on use of state resources during the campaign or provisions to promote transparency in the appointment of polling station staff or access to INEC decisions. In addition, election petitions can only be filed by candidates and political parties. An issue of particular concern is the lack of enforcement of the relevant legal framework by INEC such as the procedures for voter registration, financing of political parties and campaign rules. INEC's selectivity and inconsistency with regard to the application and enforcement of electoral laws also appeared in other instances. Following the request for an injunction restraining INEC from conducting any election for the office of Governor in Anambra State, the Supreme Court ruled, on 5 April, that it was the statutory duty of the INEC to conduct elections and to usher in tenure of office. The Constitution gives the responsibility to INEC to fix the date for a gubernatorial election1 following the expiration of the term of office of a governor. Therefore, INEC had a clear duty to initiate action to cancel the gubernatorial election in Anambra State. Registration of Political Parties and candidates A record number of 50 political parties were registered by INEC to participate in the elections, of which 25 nominated a presidential candidate. Since a Supreme Court ruling in November 2002, INEC had been less stringent in registering political parties. As stated in the Constitution, political parties need to reflect the federal character of Nigeria with executive committee members from at least two-thirds of the states of the Federation. Thereby
185

interest groups such as minorities face constraints in establishing their own political parties. Further, under the Electoral Act 2006, independent candidates are not permitted. 1. The Constitution establishes in Section 178 (1) and (2) that the date of a gubernatorial election shall be established by INEC on a date not earlier than 60 days and not later than 30 days before the expiration of the term of office of the holder of that office. 2. The Federal High Court Abuja delivered a judgment ordering INEC to include the name of Mr. Atiku Abubakar in the list of presidential candidates. The Court based its decision on the nullification of the indictment by the High Court in Lagos. Since the indictment was nullified, the grounds for disqualification lacked merit. This decision was appealed against and was pending at the time of the election. The nomination of candidates by political parties was often characterised by a process of selection rather than election. Sometimes party primaries took place outside of clear democratic rules. This resulted in a number of court cases which involved politicians who won their internal party primary but were not nominated by the political party, or were nominated but subsequently substituted. During the nomination period, INEC disqualified about 100 candidates, mainly for non-fulfilment of the age requirements, and in some cases, including that of Vice President Atiku Abubakar, in view of indictments by the Administrative Panel of Inquiry. Further, some people who won primaries were not nominated or were substituted by the political parties. This again resulted in a number of court cases. The lack of procedures and time limits in the law for handling complaints related to substitution or disqualification of candidates prompted the filing of many cases in the courts just a few days before the elections. Some cases remained pending at the time of the elections. This created uncertainty about the final list of candidates and was not conducive to clear voter choice at the elections. In one such case, a PDP gubernatorial candidate was substituted by the party leadership challenged his removal. On 4 April the Supreme Court ruled that the candidate was illegally substituted and ordered INEC to include his name as the gubernatorial candidate for Imo State. However the fact that the court decision was delivered so late, prevented the candidate's name from appearing on the ballot paper and the name of the substituted candidate remained on the ballot paper in some polling stations.
186

Despite a Federal High Court Abuja judgment ordering INEC to include Atiku Abubakar's name on the candidate list, INEC refused to comply until the Supreme Court ruled, on 16 April, that INEC was not vested with the power to disqualify candidates.2 The decision of INEC not to include Mr. Abubakar's name until the Supreme Court ruling created last minute logistical difficulties regarding the ballot papers. The Supreme Court ruling also raised questions as to what would happen to disqualified candidates in the gubernatorial and State Assembly elections. Election Administration INEC was provided with a budget of Naira 54.5 billion (349 million), which represented a sound financial basis. However, although the Electoral Act 2006 promulgated financial independence by INEC, the envisaged INEC fund was not established and INEC remained dependent on the President's office for approval of its expenditures as evidenced when some INEC cheques were not cleared in October 2006. By mid December 2006, serious questions were being raised by some political parties and elements of civil society about INEC's independence from the Federal Government, which contributed to undermining public confidence in INEC. In the period leading up to the elections, there was little engagement of INEC with political parties and civil society. INEC lacked transparency in its decisions and did not provide important information, including the final number of candidates or the final number of voters per constituency. INEC also declined to provide observers with standard information and materials, including access to the voter register, and did not permit observers to attend INEC meetings with political parties or the media. Contrary to international best practice INEC made no provision for results to be posted at polling stations or published at superior levels of the election administration. After widespread irregularities in the result transfer and collation process during the 14 April elections, the INEC Chairman announced, on the eve of the 21 April elections, that for the federal elections results should be posted at polling stations and collation centres. However, EU observers reported that this was not implemented in the vast majority of places visited. The process of transferring polling station results electronically lacked clear guidelines and was ill-prepared, resulting in an expensive investment without the expected return. Preparations by INEC to conduct the elections were delayed throughout the process. The delay of two months to complete the voter registration
187

exercise affected the production and distribution of permanent voter registration cards. Voters had to use their temporary voter registration cards which were often basic unlaminated print outs. In both elections the distribution of ballot papers was delayed which had a serious impact on both polling days. Although INEC printed correct ballot papers for the 14 April elections a number of elections could not be held on 21 April due to missing candidate names. Originally, INEC had planned to print ballot papers which included pictures of candidates for security reasons. However, in the end it only produced presidential and gubernatorial ballot papers with pictures and the names of candidates, at times with spelling mistakes and missing pictures. Following the 16 April Supreme Court ruling, INEC reprinted presidential ballot papers without the pictures and the names of candidates and, contrary to the law, without serial numbers. Some candidate names were missing from the Senate and House of Representative ballot papers causing a cancellation of elections, for example in the case of a Senatorial race in Lagos State. INEC had difficulties in recruiting the 500,000 plus ad hoc staff to administer polling stations, due, at least in part, according to numerous reports received by EU observers around the country, to fears of electoral violence and intimidation. Moreover, recruitment of ad hoc staff was conducted in a nontransparent manner and depended on an impartiality check by INEC. The late recruitment, reportedly for security reasons, delayed the cascade training, which varied in quality. A limited national voter education media campaign by INEC commenced only seven days prior to the 14 April election day. In one national TV spot INEC misinformed voters about the secrecy of the vote by broadcasting a mock polling station without a polling booth. INEC's partners through the Joint Donor Basket Fund implemented voter education programmes, but a broad and effective and grass-root level civic education programme was lacking. For security purposes most RECs and Administrative Secretaries were reshuffled to different postings about 10 days before the 14 April elections, reportedly in an attempt to limit fraud and electoral irregularities. At times various INEC state offices were not made aware of INEC HQ regulations, for example in the case of observer accreditation. In addition, contrary to INEC HQ regulations the Kano and Niger State INEC offices informed their Electoral Officers that corrections to the voter register could still be undertaken
188

during the last few days before the 14 April elections when voter lists were posted at polling stations for orientation purposes only. Constituency Delineation and Voter Registration INEC has the constitutional mandate to delineate constituencies at least every 10 years to ensure equal suffrage. The current constituency boundaries date back to 1996 and are based on the 1991 census, leading to an imbalanced representation of Nigerians in the House of Representatives and the 36 State assemblies for the next four years. For example, one Member of the House of Representatives in Bayelsa State currently represents 284,000 people whereas one Member in Zamfara State represents 466,000 people. Citizens in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), where one Member represents as many as 703,000 people, are particularly underrepresented. Additionally, the constitutional requirement of equal suffrage has not been upheld at state level. From the information available, the discrepancies among state assembly constituencies are even higher. The voter registration exercise conducted by INEC was widely reported to have experienced significant problems. It was initially planned to run from 8 October to 14 December 2006 but had to be extended until 2 February due to the fact that by 10 December only 10 million voters had been registered. NDP filed an action before the Federal High Court on 27 March against INEC for failing to comply with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2006 relating to the display of the voter registration lists after the cut off date established in the law. However, on 29 March the President gave his consent to the Electoral Acts Amendment Bill 2007, passed by the National Assembly in January 2007, which extended the cut off date for registration to 60 days before the election and the deadline for display of the voter register to 45 days before the election. The electronic direct data capturing process used in the exercise was hampered by a delay in establishing sufficient registration centres in the field and experienced technical and power supply problems. On 15 February 2007, INEC announced that 61 million voters out of the 70 million Nigerians estimated to be above 18 years of age had been registered. Although INEC reported that the voter register was displayed at registration centre and ward level from 5 to 10 February 2007, multiple reports received by EU observers around the country indicated that this legal obligation was not implemented. The number of registered voters of the total population varies widely between the states and ranges from 32 per cent in Ekiti to 60 per cent in Gombe
189

State. The voter register at polling stations on 14 April was largely not in alphabetical or numeric order which delayed the voting process. In over 30 per cent of polling stations visited, EU observers rated the quality of the voter register to be poor on the basis of significant numbers of under age voters, double entries, and missing and blurred pictures of voters. The additional or sole use of the manual register at some polling stations was a further indication of the limitations of the electronic direct data capture exercise. Campaign The election campaign took place throughout the country in a lively, if sometimes quite heated, environment in which freedoms of expression and assembly were broadly respected. Political parties campaigned actively, addressing voters through a wide range of means, including public rallies, vehicle motorcades with loud speakers, gatherings in market places, door to door visits, billboards and posters, which were visible in abundance throughout the country. Paid for campaigns by political parties in both national and local broadcasters and print media were numerous. In some areas debates and public forums were organized by journalists, media outlets and civil society organizations. Traditional and religious leaders were active in some states by arranging public debates or providing various forms of peaceful conflict resolution between rival parties. Only a few of the 50 registered political parties (AC, ANPP, DPP, PPD) conducted extensive nationwide campaigns. However, local activities were sometimes intense, with the primary target for campaign activities being the presidential and gubernatorial races. General interest in and intensity of, the campaigns varied greatly, but was reported by EU observers to be higher in states where there was a prospect of a change in power. Although plans to address the basic needs of the electorate were sometimes presented, parties and candidates generally lacked clear political programmes and the main focus was on personal qualities rather than political ideology. This explained the many high profile defections from one party to another of candidates seeking to affiliate themselves with the strongest backer and best network. A level playing field did not exist during the campaign, with ruling parties taking advantage of resources available to them. INEC so far has neglected its role in providing legal oversight over campaign spending and scrutiny. While the electoral framework includes restrictions on campaign spending to prevent disproportionate expenditure, this was not supervised and enforced
190

by INEC. The fact that there was no prohibition on the use of state resources in the electoral law contributed to the uneven playing field for political contestants. While in some states peaceful campaign activities were observed, numerous violent incidents were reported by EU observers and other credible sources. These often involved destruction of campaign material and party offices, harassment, intimidation and violent clashes between party supporters. This was particularly the case in the south-west but other areas such as Gombe State were also affected. During this election, political sponsorship, recruitment and use of thugs, often armed with traditional weapons or fire arms remained a problem as had been the case in 2003. This activity was reported by media and credible organisations in most States and additionally was observed by EU observers in Borno, Abia, Taraba, Gombe, Bauchi, Kaduna, Zamfara, Niger, Oyo, Osun, Kogi and Edo States. At times inflammatory speech or indigenous references like sons of the soil or home boys further aggravated the tense atmosphere. In some areas, such as Assakio in Nassarawa State and Wukari, Takum and Jato Aka in the border area between Benue and Taraba States, violence assumed an ethnic dimension with people belonging to minorities being killed, displaced or rendered homeless because of politically motivated clashes. Assaults, assassination of candidates and attempts at assassination of candidates were reported in the pre-election period. Overall, credible reports, including from IDASA and the international and domestic media suggest that at least 200 people, including police, have been killed in election-related violence, which is a higher number than was reported for the 2003 elections. Despite welcomed and repeated messages from security agencies showing a tolerance zero policy towards political violence, the security agencies, INEC and political parties did not appear to take decisive steps to address the situation and hold perpetrators to account. Media There is a vibrant and expanding media environment in Nigeria. Radio is the key media. Freedom of expression is guaranteed by the Constitution. However arbitrary actions by state security agencies curtail it at times. Press freedom is further limited by financial instability of the media while low income of journalists exposes them to offers of payment in return for favourable reporting. Access of citizens to information through media is limited as a result
191

of various factors, including insufficient power supplies, lack of financial means to purchase a newspaper and high rate of illiteracy. National state-owned media NTA (TV) and FRCN (radio), legally obliged to give fair and impartial coverage as they are publicly owned, demonstrated bias in favour of the incumbent party and its presidential candidate in their news programmes. PDP as a political party received a larger amount of news time than all other political parties together and the PDP presidential candidate received by far the largest share of time (52 per cent on radio and 30 per cent on TV), dedicated to presidential candidates in the news programmes of the two national broadcasters. Local state media showed tendency to favour the local ruling party. Distribution of the time among the candidates and parties in the news programmes of the private broadcast media, monitored by the EOM, was more equitable in comparison with the state-owned media. However, coverage of the broadcast media, both state owned as well as private, was focused on only a small number of parties, predominantly PDP, ANPP and AC and overall, the broadcast media failed to provide balanced coverage of contestants, as required by the legal framework. The campaigns of the 50 registered parties varied in intensity, and lack of capacity to sufficiently cover their campaigns challenged the ability of the media to provide balanced coverage of the parties. PDP carried out the most extensive paid for campaign in the media. Visible campaigns were also conducted by AC, ANPP, DPA, DPP and PPA. In a positive development, national state-owned as well as private media aired debates and interviews with presidential candidates, and some local media organized discussions with gubernatorial candidates, giving them equal access and opportunity to present their views and allowing voters access to information facilitating an informed choice. Unfortunately some candidates did not participate in these efforts, thus reducing the information value of these programmes. Activities of INEC were given wide publicity in the media; in addition, INEC conducted an image-building paid for media campaign of its own. However visible information campaigns educating and informing voters about the process of voting appeared in the national media only in the last week preceding the 14 April elections. Get out the vote campaigns, organised by state institutions as well as by NGOs, were aired in the broadcast media. Overall picture of the political scene provided by newspapers was more diverse than the one given by broadcast media. However, print media also
192

provided the bulk of their coverage to a small number of parties with the highest ratings in the opinion polls. In contrast with national broadcast media, which gave most of their election coverage to the presidential contest, national newspapers provided much more detailed coverage of gubernatorial contests and developments in particular states. Activities of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), the regulatory body for the broadcast media, were rather low-key during the campaign. NBC claimed to be conducting comprehensive monitoring of the campaign coverage in the broadcast media, however, it did not publicize the results of its media monitoring during the campaign. NBC fined 14 broadcast media for campaign blackout violations during the 14 April campaign silence period. Members of State Security Service suspended broadcasts of Lagos-based private TV Gotell and radio Unity FM on 11 April and sealed the premises of the stations. These media did not re-establish their operations during the remainder of the campaign period. The State Security Services also raided offices of TV AIT on 17 April, terminating broadcast of a paid program, critical of the incumbent president. Media regulatory framework was undermined by these actions of the State Security Services, which bypassed NBC. Participation of Women Despite a legal framework clearly prohibiting discrimination on the grounds of sex and strong commitments from Electoral Administration, political parties and authorities, women remained under-represented in public life. Many civil society women's organisations throughout the country as well as UNIFEM have struggled successfully to increase general political awareness in favour of the participation of women and the issue was also debated in the media during the campaign. However, the highly commercialised nature of politics, the male dominated party apparatus and political violence remain amongst the strongest deterrents. The decision by some political parties to wave nomination fees for female candidates has not succeeded in increasing their numbers. Some female candidates faced pressure, including violence, to withdraw as candidates or were substituted by male counterparts outside the timeframe permitted by the Electoral Act 2006. Turnout of women on 21 April appeared to be lower than on 14 April, which could have been due, at least in part, to violence during the 14 April polls. While INEC agreed to set up a gender team, only one of the 12 Commissioners is a woman. At the polling station level, a woman was the presiding officer in only 20 per cent of polling
193

stations visited on 14 and 21 April. During the election days, only 2 per cent of the political party agents in the polling stations visited were women. Civil society Nigeria has a strong civil society, which has played a constructive role in the country's transition towards democracy. Civil society organisations were particularly engaged with the constitutional and electoral law amendment process and in the prevention of a third term for the offices of President and Governors. However, reports vary about civil society organisation involvement in civic and voter education. The Transition Monitoring Group (TMG) an umbrella of around 250 organisations countrywide observed the 1999 and 2003 elections and issued critical statements. For the purpose of observing the 2007 elections, eight organisations (TMG, FOMWAN, LEMT, WEP, MULAC, CDD, CLO, ACE Nigeria) worked together to issue a common preliminary report. Other observer groups included the Nigerian Bar Association as well as the faith-based Justice, Development and Peace Coalition, Christian Association of Nigeria, Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs and the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria. The fact that INEC did not established objective criteria and a timely process for observer accreditation encouraged the perception that INEC was not interested in the involvement of a strong civil society in the oversight of the elections. Screening of domestic observer organisations was undertaken by the State Security Services. In the end, 53 out of 175 organisations that applied were accredited. INEC unnecessarily delayed the observer accredita-tion process and most domestic observer organisations received accreditation cards for their observers on the eve of the state elections and then in insufficient numbers. Similarly political parties also faced problems in obtaining sufficient numbers of accreditation cards in time before the 14 April elections. Election Day - State Elections Delays in the opening of polling stations were reported by EU observers throughout the country. By 9 am only one fifth of polling stations visited by EU observers were open and in only one third were the required three polling officials were present. In some polling stations, for example in most of Enugu State, Zamfara State and in the LGA Lafia of Nassarawa State, polling did not
194

commence before 15:00. In many polling stations, voting did not take place at all, for example in eight out of 24 polling stations observed in Gombe State and the whole of LGA Ohaozara of Ebonyi State. Essential polling materials, including ballot papers, were missing in almost 40 per cent of polling stations observed for the opening. In many states observers reported missing official result forms (EC8 series) as in Anambra State where none had been delivered to the polling stations and LGA collation centres visited In 45 per cent of polling stations observed, the overall conduct of polling was rated as poor. Observers witnessed disorder in 22 per cent of polling stations visited. In the majority of polling stations observed, breaches of the secrecy of the vote occurred. In many polling stations observed it was common practice to openly vote surrounded by polling agents. In a fifth of polling stations visited, voters who were clearly under age were witnessed voting, particularly in Bauchi, Kebbi, Sokoto, Yobe, Plateau and Zamfara States. In almost one fifth of polling stations visited attempts to influence voters were witnessed and in one fourth of polling stations procedures to check and apply ink were not adequately followed. Generally in many polling stations one of the three polling staff was missing and in 40 per cent of observed polling stations, polling staff had a poor understanding of polling procedures and was widely assisted by polling agents. The Manual for Electoral Officials did not appear to be available at most polling stations visited. Disorder inside polling stations was observed in 15 per cent of polling stations visited during closing and counting. Although INEC was aware of the serious delay in the opening of polling stations, no regulation was issued to extend official polling hours. In one fourth of polling stations observed, voters who were queuing at 15:00 were not allowed to cast their vote as prescribed by the law. Despite procedural shortcomings observers rated the counting processes in four fifths of the observed polling stations as good. However in one fifth of counts observed, valid votes were incorrectly rejected by the presiding officer. In 30 per cent of observed polling stations the reconciliation of used ballot papers did not equal the number of valid, spoiled and rejected ballot papers. In one fourth of polling stations observed not all polling agents and police received an official result form copy as provided in the law. The newly introduced electronic result transfer system to INEC HQ was not used at any polling stations visited and used in only 15 per cent of collation centres observed.
195

Party agents were seen in 96 per cent of polling stations observed and in all collation centres visited. Domestic observers were present in 54 per cent during the opening of polling stations observed and in 40 per cent of collation centres observed. Police were present in almost all polling stations visited. The collation process was marred by serious irregularities. In almost 30 per cent of collation centres observers had indications or proof that polling results were fraudulently changed. Observers rated the collation process at ward level and LGA level as poor in 45 per cent and 32 per cent respectively. Results were neither displayed at polling station level, nor publicly displayed broken down by polling station at collation centres or national level. EU observers witnessed cases of fraud. For example in Enugu State at ward level of the LGA Enugu North observers noted that completely different results in favour of the ruling party were recorded on the result forms when compared with those collected in eight polling stations. Similarly in Abia State, LGA Ohafia an EU observer team was able to detect from official result sheets of polling stations and ward collation centres that results from polling stations were falsely recorded. In Zamfara State, no elections took place in five wards but fake results were included into the Gubernatorial elections for these wards. In Enugu State, LGA Enugu South collation centre observers witnessed open thumb printing of unused ballot papers in favour of the ruling party. An identical case was observed in LGA Ife of Osun State. In LGA Akko of Gombe State EU observers witnessed the fraudulent change of election results by the presiding officer during the transmission of polling station results to the collation centre. Another indication of irregularities at collation centres was noted in Igweorie in Ebonyi State where a polling station with 223 registered voters showed a result of 601 votes cast for only one party. During election day, disruption, sometimes violent, of the polling and the counting process by groups of thugs has been observed in several states. For example in Anambra State, election material had been hijacked at two polling stations visited by an observer team. A significant number of ballot papers for three LGAs (Assakio, Ashinge and Arikya) in Nassarawa State were snatched by thugs. However results were delivered including the total amount of ballot papers for these LGAs. Observers witnessed thugs stealing and destroying official ward collation result forms in front of the INEC office of the LGA Lafia of Nassarawa State. In Gombe State cases of hijacking and destruction of ballot boxes and placement of ballot boxes in the private houses of traditional leaders and ruling party members were observed.
196

Although for security reasons the EU EOM had no observers deployed in Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers States it received credible and multiple reports from international and domestic sources and media reports indicated that the elections in these states were marred by intimidation, violence and electoral fraud. Election Day - Federal Elections Although INEC decided on the eve of the 21 April election to postpone the opening of polling stations from 08.00 to 10.00 and the closing of polling from 15.00 to 17.00 the disorganised delivery of polling materials resulted once again in a delayed opening in the majority of states. In a number of states including Abia, Imo, Kaduna and Bauchi polling stations did not open until late afternoon. In 78 per cent of polling stations observed during the opening essential polling materials were missing, especially polling booths and ballot papers. A number of elections could not be held since INEC did not print and provide the correct ballots. The newly printed presidential ballot papers were without serial numbers and insufficient quantities were delivered in many parts of the country. In eastern Benue State no presidential ballot papers were delivered and in Ebonyi and Abia States Presiding Officers only received 46 per cent of the required number. In Kaduna South in 6 out of 13 wards no elections were conducted due to the tensions surrounding the delivery of faulty ballot papers. Similarly in Anambra state in five LGAs no elections took place due to the delivery of incorrect polling materials. In Enugu State, thugs targeted the transport of polling materials to polling stations and robbed the sensitive materials. Once again a shortage of polling staff was reported in 50% of polling stations observed and at times a voter register was not used during the polling process. In almost half of polling stations observed the secrecy of the vote was not ensured due to a lack of polling booths. In 14 per cent of observed polling stations attempts were made to influence voters. EU observers witnessed under age voters in one fifth of observed polling stations particularly in Borno, Yobe, Gombe, Jigawa, Kano, Kebbi and Niger states and in Niger and Jigawa States cases of vote buying were observed. Generally the security situation during polling day was better than on 14 April due to a heavier presence of police and the army. According to estimates by EU observers voter turn out in the North varied between 35 and 55 per
197

cent whereas in the South the figures appeared to be lower. In 90 per cent of polling stations observed police were present. Party agents and domestic observers were present in 96 and 43 percent respectively of polling stations visited. Observers rated the overall conduct of the polling process as poor in 43 per cent of polling stations observed. Despite the late opening of many polling stations visited, voting procedures stopped at 5 pm, limiting the polling hours and disenfranchising potential voters. Contrary to the provisions in the Electoral Act 2006, in a number of cases observed, voters waiting in line at 5 pm were not allowed to vote. The closing and counting procedures were generally transparent and no complaints were lodged in polling stations observed. However disorder was observed in 24 per cent of the result transfer and collation centre processes observed. Generally the conduct of the collation centres was slightly better than on 14 April but in a fifth of cases the collation officers did not collate the results correctly. In one third of observed collation centres unauthorised staff had been present. In one fifth of ward collation centres the collation officer was a woman. In 25 per cent of collation centres not all party agents received an official result form copy and electronic transfer of results was rarely seen to be implemented. In 54 per cent of ward collation centres and 62 per cent of LGA collation centres observers rated the collation process as good. A number of fraudulent practices were observed. In many polling stations unused ballot papers were marked and stuffed into the ballot box resulting in almost 100 per cent voter turn out as observed in Kwara, Gombe, Edo and Niger States. Likewise in Akwa Ibom ballot stuffing on a large scale was observed with 50 polling station result forms in LGA Ibiono-Ibom producing a 97.9%. Inflation of results on official result forms at any level of the collation process was observed, for example at ward level in Cross River State and at LGA level in Ogun and Kwara States. Despite assurances by INEC no public display of polling station results has been observed. Complaints and Appeals As no specific procedure is laid down in the law for initiation and adjudication of complaints prior to the elections, considerable confusion surrounded this aspect of the elections. In practice, complaints were submitted to a variety of institutions including INEC, RECs, the police and the different
198

courts at State and Federal level. RECs reported that only a small number of official complaints were lodged with INEC. One reason for the small number of pre-election complaints might be due to the fact that INEC has advised political parties and candidates to lodge their petitions after election day. This has led to a situation where unlawful acts or omissions that should and need to be addressed before the election have not been dealt with prior to the election days. No record of pre-election complaints has been kept and no evidence could be found of an official response to complaints. Meetings between INEC and the political parties have been the forum at which the majority of complaints have been made. Political parties report that the effective processing of preelection complaints has depended mainly on the personal skills and degree of commitment of election officials. Most pre-election complaints related to the registration of voters and the recruitment of electoral officials. Some pre-election complaints relating to the nomination and substitution of candidates by the political parties and disqualification of candidates by INEC have been lodged with the Federal High Court. Most complaints concerning campaign violations relate to actions of a criminal nature such as the defacement of campaign posters, intimidation, violent incidents and damage to property by opposing political parties. These have been made to the Commissioners of Police. After the State elections, some complaints on the conduct of the State elections in a number of states, including Ebonyi, Anambra, Benue, Cross River, Taraba, Kaduna, Gombe, Kanu, Imo, Jigawa, and Zamfara states were lodged by political parties and individuals with INEC seeking the annulment of elections in some or all of the Local Government Areas in these states. The main grounds for complaints were violence, rigging and late distribution of materials. More specifically, complaints related to missing voter registers, ballot box stuffing, hijacking of ballot boxes and other sensitive materials, thumb printing of ballot papers, forgery of results, use of violence to force people to voter for a particular political party, intimidation and harassment of party agents and voters by thugs, police and the armed forces which, most cases, resulted in elections not being held in a number of Local Government areas in these states. Based on the reports received, INEC annulled the gubernatorial election in Imo state but failed to publicly outline the grounds for the annulment of
199

the gubernatorial elections and reason why the State House of Assembly elections were not also annulled. As a result some political parties in Imo have requested INEC to clarify the matter. The Electoral Act 2006 does not allow voters, observers or other interested organisations to file election petitions or to address electoral malpractice in any other way. Election petitions can only be filed by candidates and political parties and must be filed within 30 days of the declaration of results. At the time of this statement, no petitions had been filed before Election Tribunals, however several political parties have stated their intention to do so in areas where incidents were reported during the election day. In a positive development the Courts of Appeal established mechanisms to simplify the procedure and to ensure timely determination of election petition proceedings since there are no time limits for the determination of petitions included in the law. The new strategy focuses on accelerated hearing of petitions before Tribunals by identifying the issues for determination and narrowing the number of witnesses called at the hearing of the petition.

200