Vitsebsk Regional Court sides with election commission who deceived voters
Aliaksei Haurutsikau and Khrystafor Zhaliapau presented to the court a written explanation of citizens whose signatures for their nomination were invalidated. Some of them appeared in court to tell about how they had been deceived. But neither the prosecutor nor the Regional Court wanted to admit the decision to deny registration was illegal.
“Vitsebsk Commission has a new invention in these elections. When checking the authenticity of the signatures, commissioners go to people with special statements saying that the date was not written by the voter. When talking with people, they are not warned about it, but are asked to sign the paper. A person, convinced that he was questioned about the authenticity of his signature, is ready to testify that he did nominate me. And he signs it without reading,” says Khrystafor Zhaliapau, local coordinator of the Movement “For Freedom" on the specifics of the Vitsebsk election knowhow.
He and Aliaksei Haurutsikau, activist of the organizing committee of the Social Democratic Party “Narodnaya Hramada” were not registered as candidates for the Vitsebsk City Council with reference to the results of this very check.
Similar voter fraud with "allegations of violations" was reported by the coordinator of the organizing committee of the BCD, Tatsiana Seviarynets.
Khrystafor Zhaliapau is yet to appear in court on February 26. Aliaksei Haurutsikau has already spoken at a hearing and received a decision:
"I was not alone at the trial, witnesses were there, too. I want to stress this: people are so outraged by deception that they not only wrote written statements about how they were "framed", but also agreed to come to the court building. Witnesses said that they were visited by the head of the commission, however, she "does not remember" where she was... But eventually the court did not take my side, saying that the decision to dismiss my registration papers was legal. Because, at the time of registration at the disposal of the committee there were petitions from citizens claiming that "the dates were not written in person”. And they challenged that only after the deadlines for registration had passed. So I will not be a candidate for deputies!”
As a lawyer, Aliaksei Haurutsikau knows another way to deal with illegal methods of election commissions. He is going to write to the prosecutor so that these actions were assessed from the perspective of the Criminal Code. However, in this case, the "epic" with signatures may be delayed for several months. Yet, this matter should be brought to the end, as the people were cheated, said the activist.
"Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections"