Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association within the framework of the Short-term Observation (STO) Mission provides the public with information about the observation results of the October 2 elections by 8 PM. Based on the information collected by the GYLA’s observers, we address the issues related to the closing of polling stations and the beginning of the vote counting, as well as the tendencies observed in and around the polling stations in the second part of the Election Day.
Violation of the rules concerning perimeters of the polling stations, control over the will of the voters, non-compliance with inking regulations, disregarding rules related to the mobile ballot box and voting procedures in general, as well as the facts of entering the polling station with improper documents, continue to occur. In particular:
- In Kutaisi #80 precinct two voters who were included in the special voters’ list, voted with the ballot paper for the majoritarian candidate. GYLA`s observer filed a complaint requesting the imposition of disciplinary liability.
- In Marneuli #65 precinct GYLA`s observer identified the facts of voting without inking and without an ID card, whereupon they demanded the elimination of this violation. In response to that, the chairman of the commission expelled GYLA`s observer from the polling station. The observer of another organization supported the decision.
- In Marneuli #65 precinct the mobile ballot box, which had 40 voters on the list, returned to the polling station after one hour and 20 minutes. The integrity of its seal was lost. Consequently, GYLA`s observer demanded the invalidation of the mobile ballot box results.
- In Marneuli #48 precinct GYLA filed a complaint in response to the fact of continuous voting without inking. Such cases were not prevented; therefore, GYLA submitted the complaint to the District Election Commission and demanded the annulment of the polling results at this precinct.
- In Zugdidi #90 precinct GYLA`s observer was placed in an hostile environment by an observer from the different organization following the identification of a fact of violation, more specifically, the registrar calling off one of the citizens to vote for #41.
- In Gori #70 precinct, the polling booths were arranged in such a way, that secrecy of the ballot was violated.
- In Batumi #55 precinct the chairman of the commission put the envelope containing ballots in the main ballot box. After facing the reaction of the observers and commission members, the chairman declared that the envelope belonged to one of the citizens and he/she had put it in the box at his/her request.
- In Didube #27 precinct, the seal integrity of the main ballot box was lost and the seal numbers in the voting day record book were edited with the correction pen. Concerning this incident, GYLA demanded that voting be stopped, the ballot box sealed and disciplinary action taken.
By 8 PM, considering the identified violations, GYLA`s observers had filed and written more than 80 complaints and remarks throughout the day.
Short-Term Observation (STO) Mission of Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association (GYLA) on Election Day
Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association Short-Term Observation (STO) Mission on October 2 Local Self-Government Elections consists of 350 observers in distinct and precinct election commissions in 10 municipalities of 8 regions across the country.
On Election Day GYLA operates a hotline number for the citizens which enables them to receive legal consultations as well as any information regarding electoral procedures, violations on the polling day, and the ways of responding to them.
The hotline number is: 577 36 15 20
GYLA will hold three press conferences regarding the process of Election Day observation at the NGO Media Center during the day. The press conferences will be held at 11:00, 16:00, and 21:00. On October 3, GYLA will finalize its observation findings at 12 PM.
GYLA’s monitoring mission on the voting day of the Local-self Government elections was made possible with the funding of the British Embassy. The opinions expressed in the statement are those of the Georgian Young Lawyers’ Association and its content may not express the views of the donor organization.