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GYLA publishes its opinions on amendments to the Election Code

2021-06-08 18:32
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GYLA presented its opinions on the amendments to the Election Code to the Parliament. The organization welcomes the improvement in the electoral legislation and the emergence of a significant part of the document proposed by Charles Michel, President of the European Council, on April 19. We are pleased that some of the GYLA's opinions have been reflected in the document.

Nevertheless, GYLA has the following comments concerning the draft law:

Composing district commissions - GYLA focuses on the “Charles Michel document,” according to which two-thirds of the CEC should be devoted to the election of professional members to district election commissions. On the contrary, the bill envisages the reduction of the quorum required for the decision after the first unsuccessful vote to an absolute majority, which calls into question whether the principle of composing the district commissions will be based on the consensus.

Voter control - The proposed amendment tightens voter control regulations and prohibits any physical obstruction of the movement of voters within 100 meters of a polling station and gathering of people at the same distance on Election Day or registering voters. Any violation of the rule shall be punishable by a fine. GYLA believes that these prohibitions should be complemented for better efficiency by a prohibition banning the presence of any unauthorized person within the same range.

Electoral system of local self-government - The parallel model of the mixed electoral system for composing the Sakrebulo does not guarantee that the mood of the voters is reflected properly in the representative body and it also leads to disproportionate representation. Therefore, GYLA believes that the proposed version should be replaced with a dependent model. If the latter system is approved, the results obtained through different principles will influence each other and ensure the proportionality.

Timeframes for appealing electoral disputes - GYLA considers that the proposed timeframes for appealing are short and should be increased.

Mandatory recount of votes- GYLA considers that the Precinct Election Commission should be obliged to open any relevant election documents and recount the voting results, even if there is an imbalance in the final protocol of voting results.

For more details on these and other recommendations, please see the report below.