Bulgarians appear to have taken to preferential voting with a passion, with more than third who voted in the country’s October 5 elections using their right to re-arrange the order of candidates of the party of their choice. Going by provisional figures released by the Central Election Commission, about 34 per cent of those who voted exercised preferential voting – more than 1.1 million people. Preferential voting was brought into Bulgarian law by the rewritten Election Act that was approved in March 2014. Voters’ first chance to use it was in Bulgaria’s May 2014 European Parliament elections, with the most celebrated case involving the Bulgarian Socialist Party. In the May vote, then-party leader Sergei Stanishev was shoved down the list to be replaced by the candidate who was 15th on the list. Momchil Nekov, hitherto obscure, became the toast of those amused by the BSP’s misfortunes.
Central Election Commission
Kazakhstan today on Oct. 1 holds the election of Senate deputies (upper house of parliament). Some 53 candidates, who have passed the registration procedure, originally submitted their request, according to the Central Election Commission (CEC) of Kazakhstan. Some 39 people were included in the list of candidates, because 14 candidates submitted applications to quit the race. The preparation and election is observed by 166 representatives from foreign states and international organizations, as well as 110 foreign media representatives, CEC said.
Ukraine’s Security Service claims that it has removed a virus at the Central Election Commission’s server, designed to delete the results of the presidential vote. According to the interior minister the cyber-attack may force a ‘manual vote count.’ “The virus has been eliminated, software is replaced. So, we now have the confidence that the Central Election Commission’s server is safe,” Valentin Nalivaychenko, SBU head, is cited by UNN news agency. He is cited as saying that the virus was meant to destroy the results of presidential election on May 25. However the CEC programmers may not be able to fix the system in time for the elections, coup-installed Interior Minister Arsen Avakov announced on his website. “On May 22 unknown intruders destroyed the ‘Elections’ information-analytical system of the Central Elections Commission, including those of the regional election commissions.”
Ukraine’s Central Election Commission and Ministry of Justice are looking into the possibility to hold an all-Ukrainian referendum on decentralization of the country during the first round of the presidential election scheduled for May 25 or during the second round due to take place on June 15, the Deputy Secretary of the National Security Council announced Tuesday. “Two dates are now on the table: May 25 and June 15. These are the dates for the two rounds of the presidential election. This is the way to ensure the low cost of the referendum. Currently the Central Election Commission is investigating whether these questions [related to the decentralization] could be printed on security paper till the first round or by the second round. This [the referendum] is most likely to take place on June 15,” Viktoriya Siumar said during a press conference adding that the final decision is expected later as it is currently being reviewed by the Central Election Commission together with the Ministry of Justice.
The political dispute over Bulgaria’s new Central Election Commission (CEC) that has put the President and the parties in power at odds was set to continue in the National Assembly on March 26 2014. A twist in the dispute came on March 25 when the Movement for Rights and Freedoms, a partner in the ruling axis, said that it was giving up on getting a third seat on the CEC, in spite of its earlier demands for such a seat – and that it would opposition party GERB’s demand for a deputy chairpersonship of the commission. Centre-right GERB is the largest party in the 42nd National Assembly but also the opposition after it could find no party with which to form a governing coalition after the May 2013 national parliamentary election.
One vote at Ukraine’s by-election in five parliamentary single-mandate districts on Dec. 15 goes for Hr 400. Sometimes some food is thrown in. But the payment, cunningly, comes in two installments. The first half is paid when the person agrees to vote for the right candidate, and the other half is given after the voter presents photographic proof of the vote as they exit the polling station, Ukrainian observers have found. Ukraine is holding five by-elections to parliament today in those constituencies where fraud and manipulations were so high a year ago that the results could not be established. Those constituencies are located in Cherkasy, Kaniv, Pervomaisk, Obuhiv and in Kyiv. People in those voting districts are casting their votes in 649 polling stations. Political expert and pollster Iryna Bekeshkina says that vote buying cannot seriously influence the outcome of the election when there is a high turnout, but can effect the result in smaller towns and villages that get little attention. “And that’s exactly the case with today’s by-elections. People are concentrated on rallies and I expect no high turnout,” she said.
“Voting material from three election centres in Mitrovica was totally unusable and the central election commission decided to annul and repeat the vote there,” commission member Nenad Rikalo said. The date for the repeat vote will be announced later, he told Serbian state television RTS. Electoral committee members prepare for voting in the municipal elections at a polling station in the ethnically divided city of Kosovska Mitrovica, Kosovo, 03 November 2013. Voting was cut short Sunday in Mitrovica when masked Serb extremists attacked officials and smashed ballot boxes. Other violations, such as intimidation of voters, also marred the day.
Georgia (Sakartvelo): Ruling coalition candidate Margvelashvili leads in Georgia’s presidential election | RT News
Georgian Dream party’s Georgy Margvelashvili from ruling coalition is leading in the presidential election in Georgia with 62.07 percent of the vote, the central election commission announced with around 95 percent of the vote counted. David Bakradze, who is supported by outgoing president Mikhail Saakashvili, is second with 21.76 percent, and former parliament speaker, Nino Burdzhanadze, is third with 10.2 per cent. Earlier Imedi TV’s exit polls suggested that Margvelashvili was leading in the presidential election in Georgia with about 68 per cent of the vote. Bakradze was placed second with 17.11 per cent and Burdzhanadze third with 9.33 per cent. An exit poll, performed by German GFK Company for Rustavi 2 channel, also gave a landslide victory to Margvelashvili on 66.7 percent, with his rivals Bakradze and Burdzhanadze having 20.1 and 7.5 per cent respectively.
Few people honestly thought that Azerbaijan stood a serious chance of conducting a fair and free presidential election on October 9. As I have written extensively, since the beginning of the year, Azerbaijani authorities have been engaged in an unprecedented crackdown to silence all forms of criticism and dissent. The underlying climate simply did not allow for a fair competition – not to mention that Azerbaijan has not held a single authentically democratic election since Aliyev came to power in 2003. Still, the brazen nature of the electoral violations that took place surprised even close observers of Azerbaijan. A day before the election, Meydan TV, a satellite/Internet television station, broke the story that set the tone for the whole election, which became known as the “AppGate” scandal. Meydan TV exposed an apparent fault of the Central Election Commission’s mobile phone application to allow users to track election results. On October 8, Meydan TV discovered that the results section of the application was showing, giving incumbent President Ilham Aliyev 72.76 percent of the vote before a single vote had been cast.
Azerbaijan: President’s re-election declared a day before the vote; opposition cries foul | The Washington Post
Something funny happened the day before Azerbaijan’s presidential election: The election commission announced the winner. On Tuesday, the smartphone app of the Central Election Commission released the results of Wednesday’s vote, showing President Ilham Aliyev, whose family has been at the helm of this oil-rich Caspian Sea nation for four decades, winning 73 percent of the vote. The commission explained the gaffe by saying that a software developer had released the figures as a “test” at one polling station. It apologized for the “misunderstanding.” Official results on Thursday showed Aliyev winning nearly 85 percent of the vote. His closest challenger, main opposition candidate Jamil Hasanli, trailed with less than 6 percent, followed by eight fringe candidates, according to the commission.