Parliamentary elections 2019. Report on the formation of territorial and district election commissions
Observation of the elections to the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of Belarus is carried out by the Belarusian Helsinki Committee and the Human Rights Center “Viasna” in the framework of the campaign “Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections”.
- the territorial election commissions (TECs) and the district election commissions (DECs) are an important mechanism of the electoral process, which significantly affects the holding of free and democratic elections;
- the majority of observers were able to freely attend meetings of bodies that formed the TECs and DECs; only five of them reported obstacles at the first meetings of the commissions;
- all the actors that nominated their representatives to the TECs and DECs had the opportunity to submit the necessary documents to the authorities who formed the commissions and to be present at their meetings;
- the meetings of the bodies in the majority of cases considered the professional and personal qualities of the candidates nominated to election commissions; separate votes were taken on each nominee; there were discriminatory approaches in voicing the qualities of certain candidates nominated by opposition parties and movements;
- the majority of nominees to the DECs (49.4%) and TECs (43.6%) represented public associations; 12 political parties, including five opposition, accounted for 25% of the representatives in the TECs and 17.6% in the DECs; five opposition parties nominated a total of 146 people, representing 38.9% of the number nominated by all political parties;
- as in the past, absence of legislative guarantees of the proportional representation in the election commissions of all political actors involved in the elections results in arbitrary and discriminatory treatment in respect of opposition parties and movements;
- the proportion of representatives of political parties on the TECs and DECs is still low (25% and 17.6%, respectively), as compared to the representatives of public associations (43.6% and 49.4%, respectively);
- representatives of the five largest pro-government associations and unions affiliated to the FPB, recently joined by the Belarusian Peace Foundation, are still the main organizers of the elections; the success rate of their representatives is 92.8% to the TECs and 93.6% to the DECs;
- the success rate of the representatives of opposition parties is traditionally low: only 18.75% of the nominees were elected to the TECs and 21.2% to the DECs; the selection ratios of representatives of the three opposition associations (BPF “Adradzhenne”, Movement “Za Svabodu” and “Tell the Truth”) are 0% for the TECs and 2.8% for the DECs;
- the total number of members of opposition parties and associations on all the election commissions constitutes 2.5% of all the commission members.