European Network of Elections Monitoring Organizations (ENEMO):“Lottery for DECs composition should have been conducted for each DEC separately”
Kyiv, September 11, 2012, On thepress conference, held in UNIAN news agency, European Network of Elections Monitoring Organizations (ENEMO) presented its first interim report for the period of August 5 – September 9, 2012. Ms. Maja Milikic, Deputy Head of the ENEMO Mission to Ukraine stated: “All conclusions in this report are based on ordinary observations and interviews with election stakeholders. ENEMO observers put efforts in verifying all the allegations they’ve heard from interlocutors.” ENEMO long-term observer teams cover one or two oblasts of Ukraine and focus of their observation in this period was on candidate registration, boundaries delimitation, the conduct of election campaign, formation and work of election administration and election-related complaints and appeals.
The new election law extended the rights of domestic observers. The Central Election Commission has facilitated registration of observers and its sessions are open to observes and media. Mr. Peter Novotny, Head of the ENEMO Mission to Ukraine stated: “Although law allows the CEC to make decisions and the courts to resolve electoral disputes in timely manner, not all refused candidates have effective remedies at their disposal.” He also added: “For better representation of the parties in district election commissions the CEC should have drawn lots for each district commission separately. Frequent replacements in DECs and low awareness about procedures indicate need for trainings and handbooks for DEC members.”
ENEMO notices a large trend of negative election campaign which comprised firing statements of different political contestants. Mr. Elmir Camic, LTO Coordinator commented: “ENEMO is fully aware of the importance of the parliamentary elections and the nervousness of competing political subjects. However we would like strongly to encourage political parties and candidates to avoid negative rhetoric and attacks to their opponents.” Public financed projects are presented as personal candidate achievements or political party initiatives in order to promote their election campaign. Mr. Camic added: “ENEMO urges local authorities, political parties and candidates to refrain from misusing public resources to promote their candidacy and election campaign.”
Recent blockage of national TV channel and certain allegations of pressure on the local media are very concerning and are directly influencing the freedom of speech in Ukraine which is directly influencing the campaign environment in a negative manner. Ms. Maja Milikic, Deputy Head of the ENEMO Mission to Ukraine commented: “ENEMO strongly believes that obstructing work of any media in Ukraine can bring no good to the transparency, freeness and fairness of election process. We are hoping that such events will not become the trend and we strongly encourage TVi and Volia to resolve internal disputes. ENEMO will watch closely situation with freedom of media.”
ENEMO will continue its observation in the field and in the remaining pre-election period ENEMO plans to release one more summary report which will be presented at official press conference in the beginning of October. ENEMO operates in full compliances with international standards for election observation. ENEMO 2012 Parliamentary elections observation mission to Ukraine is financially supported by the United States Government, United Kingdom Government, German Foreign Office, Kingdom of the Netherlands and Black Sea Trust.
The shambolic renovation of the Central Electoral Commission, which has been in progress for several years now, looks about to be finally concluded. On Feb. 5, the President submitted a list of candidates to the Verkhovna Rada and this suggests that the process is finally being unblocked