Slonim: CEC warns head of district election commission
On July 21st Slonim district election commission # 58 did not work during the whole day. Ivan Sheha, BPF member and the UDF candidate, had to complain to the Central Election Commission about that. Ivan Sheha points out:
“On July 21st, 2008 I came to Slonim election commission at 3.30 p.m. Under the election law, I was going to apply for registration of my initiative group.
I came to the building of the rayon administration, where the district election commission was located, and did not find any signs which would lead me to the commission’s room. I managed to find the office, but the doors were locked, although according to the work hours posted on the doors, the commission should have been working.
When I came to the office of the head of Slonim administration, they directed me to room # 419. There I submitted my application documents to head of the administration’s affairs A. Machalina. I was accompanied by head of my initiative group Yan Bedka.
In fact, at present Alena Machalina represents the whole election commission and performs all functions. We think collective work of Slonim district election commission was replaced by the work of the local officials. That seriously violates Article 37 of the Election Code, and CEC Ruling # 7 of April 24th, 2008. By this the principle of independence of election commissions from state bodies and bodies of the local self-government was violated.
We propose to correct the drawbacks in the work of Slonim election commission and bring its activity in concordance with the Belarusian legislation.”
The independent candidate received an answer signed by Ms. Yarmoshyna:
“We inform you, that in your complaint to the Central Election Commission you fail to provide facts of violation of the election law during forming of the district election commission of Slonim district # 58. The check-up established that the commission had been created meeting all the legal requirements. Your demand to exclude A. Machalina from the commission is groundless. Change of the current membership of a commission is possible only on the grounds described by Articles 36, 68, and 76 of the Election Code.
As for the fact that the commission failed to work according to the schedule, that did not affect registration of your initiative group. Taking that circumstance into account, your statement about serious violation of the election law is groundless.
We inform you that the chair of Slonim election commission was warned and advised about organizing the work of the commission strictly according to the established work hours.”
Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections