CIVIL’s preliminary report on election rerun in Tearce

The rerun in polling station 2011 in the Municipality of Tearce has completed. Unofficially, SDSM won 245 votes, VMRO-DPMNE – 149, DPA – 1, DUI – 1, Albanian Alliance– 1, VMRO for Macedonia – 2. There were 3 invalid ballots. A total of 402 voters voted.

This day was peaceful, though tense. Numerous irregularities were noted during the past days and on the day of the rerun.

There was strong presence of the police, the media and civil society representatives, domestic and foreign observation missions, along with many party representatives.

Observers of CIVIL – Center for Freedom have been present in the municipality since the first hour following the decision of the Administrative Court on the rerun in this polling station.

During the past several days it could be particularly noticed that the operation “vote buying” had been put in function, with the purpose of reducing the turnout of voters for which it had been assumed that they would vote for the opposition. Despite the attempts of certain media to disqualify CIVIL’s information on the cases of vote buying, these cases have finally been confirmed also with an announcement by the MOI at 14:30 today, according to which two persons have been charged for this act of crime.

Observers of CIVIL – Center for Freedom also came across unofficial information that around 40 ID cards of voters in Tearce had been given back during the course of today’s election rerun in polling station 2011.

 

CIVIL’s observers were monitoring the election rerun in polling station 2011 in Tearce from 6:30h this morning. The election material at the polling station had not been organized on time, though it had been complete. Voting had been enabled several minutes after 7:00

The UV lamps had stopped working. The first stopped working at 8:30h this morning, and the second one stopped working at 8:55h, and at 9:05 it was determined that they are working. Eight or more voters had been turned back from the polling station in the period while the UV lamps were supposedly not working. It is strange how precisely these two lamps were not working today. It is just one polling station!

According to the reports of the observers of CIVIL – Center for Freedom who were monitoring the rerun in polling station 2011 in Tearce, members of the Electoral Board had been in constant telephone communication. When there were no voters at the polling station, they had been constantly going through and checking the Voters Register.

CIVIL publically reminded the members of the Electoral Board that sharing information with party headquarters and mobilization of voters is against the law and election procedures.

The Electoral Board at polling station 2011 in Tearce asked for and retained the authorizations of CIVIL’s observers, which is contrary to the procedure.

The large number of journalist teams were additionally contributing to the chaotic picture of polling station 2011 in Tearce. The communication between the Electoral Board and journalist teams at times was with a high tone, while cameramen and photo reporters were photographing and recording literally all voters separately. According to CIVIL’s observers, several citizens had complained of feeling uncomfortable under such media attention.

A member of the Electoral Board addressed the journalists with a high tone and expelled them from the polling station, even though it seems that the same did not apply to one television station with a national concession.

The Electoral Board was unable to help a voter that could not be found on the Voters Register, even though previously he figured on the online version.

Increased presence of police forces could be noticed in Tearce, where there was an election rerun in polling station 2011. The police behaved professionally and in correctly, whereas the increased presence was with the purpose of ensuring the right to vote and the legality of the process.

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