Golos on the outcomes of its election monitoring programme

posted 19 Sept 2015, 14:34 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 19 Sept 2015, 14:38 ]
14 September 2015

Source: HRO.org (info
The Golos non-profit organisation, whose mission is to protect voters’ rights, has published a statement on the outcomes of a monitoring programme implemented in connection with the “Single Voting Day” which took place on 13 September 2015.

An extract from the statement by Golos is reproduced below:

"Over 10,000 elections were held on 13 September 2015 in Russia. These included 21 elections for governors, 11 elections for members of regional parliaments and 25 elections for the representative bodies of regional capitals. These 2015 elections were the last chance for a full-blown rehearsal testing the capacity of Russia’s electoral system to handle the preparation, organisation and implementation of a single voting day before the nationwide elections to the State Duma of the Russian Federation, which will take place in 2016.

Golos representatives implemented a public monitoring programme which covered voting procedures, vote counting within electoral wards and the findings delivered by superior electoral commissions in connection with the elections held in 26 regions, including Astrakhan, Vladimir, Voronezh, Ivanovo, Irkutsk, Kaliningrad, Kaluga, Kirov, Kostroma, Kurgan, Leningrad, Lipetsk, Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Novosibirsk, Orlov, Rostov, Ryazan, Tver, Tomsk, Chelyabinsk and Krasnodar regions, as well as in the republics of Bashkortostan, Mari El and Tatarstan.

Golos also received information from all the electoral regions via other channels, including its hotline (8 800 333–33–50), a "Map of Electoral Violations" (www.kartanarusheniy.org) and various partners.

Golos is guided in its work by the generally accepted standards of electoral monitoring, and adheres strictly to the principle of political neutrality as one of the fundamental prerequisites for independent and objective electoral monitoring.

Despite the improvements to electoral technology over the years (transparent ballot boxes, the use of optical scan voting systems etc.), Golos believes that priority should be given to the criticisms it has voiced, due to the significance of their impact and in the interests of preserving the foundation of constitutional order and the future of the country.

The 2015 electoral campaign provided further confirmation of the trend observed over the past two years, namely that the activities of the authorities are focused on the preceding stages of the electoral process rather than the voting day itself.

The vast majority of electoral campaigns led to election results which had, in practice, been determined in advance by the decisions and actions of the incumbent authorities and the electoral commissions in charge of organising the elections, both while nominating and registering candidates and parties and in the course of pre-election promotional measures.

Given the lack of any real political competition, the results of the elections were effectively known in advance, and only acquired formal legitimation on the actual day of voting.”

See the full statement by the Golos Movement for Defence of Voters’ Rights.

Translated by Joanne Reynolds