Presidential hopeful Ali Benflis said Tuesday that thousands of his supporters would monitor Algeria’s election, vowing to protest if it is rigged in favour of ailing incumbent Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who is seeking re-election. Benflis is seen as the president’s main rival, and has repeatedly warned of fraud during the election campaign, describing it as his “main adversary” in Thursday’s vote. Speaking to reporters in Algiers, he said he had an “army” of people in place to monitor the poll “consisting of 60,000 people, most of them young men and women armed to the teeth with conviction. If the election is rigged, I will not keep quiet,” Benflis said.
A draft UN report on human rights in Ukraine reportedly acquired by US-based political magazine Foreign Policy claims Russia “rigged” the referendum in Crimea, the news outlet said on its website. The draft report, written by UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic, alleges the Russian government actively repressed the possibility of dissent or anti-Russian sentiment in the run-up to the referendum. “The delegation met with sources who claimed that there had been alleged cases of non-Ukrainian citizens participating in the referendum as well as individuals voting numerous times in different locations,” said an excerpt of the draft report published by Foreign Policy last Thursday, referring to allegations of Russia’s multiple efforts to “rig” the vote results in Crimea.
On March 16, as Crimeans voted in a referendum on joining Russia, a convoy of Russian minibuses and cars drew up to the center of Lytvynenkove, a village about 15 miles northeast of the peninsular capital. Members of the local self-defense committee of Crimean Tatars, the Muslim minority group who were exiled under Stalin but returned here when Communist rule collapsed, watched with trepidation as about 50 men, some in track suits and others in military uniform, got out of the vehicles. But the passengers hadn’t come to bully the local Tatar population, which had announced a boycott. Instead, they headed into the local polling station. The two white vans and the several cars were registered in Krasnodar, Russia. The men’s accents were Russian, and so from their appearance were they – those in uniform were Don Cossacks, a famed fighting force that served the czars and now, experts say, has become a sort of Pretorian guard for Russian President Vladimir Putin. ”Political tourists” traveling by the van-load from one polling station to the next have been a feature of Ukrainian elections going back more than a decade – locals call it “carousel voting” – but this was the first time that anyone had heard of foreigners getting into the act, a Tatar organizer said.
Turkey: Citizens have right to monitor elections for fraud-free voting, says activist | Today’s Zaman
Selen Gülün is a mayoral candidate who seeks no votes! A successful musician, she is a candidate for mayor for the İstanbul Metropolitan Municipality, just because a civil society initiative wants to monitor the election process to make sure that there is no vote rigging on the March 30 local elections, and the only way for doing it was to show a mayoral candidate. “I’ve become an independent candidate for mayor of İstanbul. Of course, I seek no votes, and I’ve also become a volunteer for the ‘Sandık Başındayız’ [Ballot Watch], so I will work on March 30 to monitor the voting process,” says Gülün. Başındayız reminds us that there is a dire need for independent civil society organizations in Turkey’s highly polarized environment. Their survival and growth would mean that Turkish society deserves to exercise full citizenship rights in a pluralistic setting.
Less than two weeks since the introduction of a biometric voter registration system in Solomon Islands there are allegations of electoral fraud. Transparency Solomon Islands says it’s already received reports of widespread vote rigging ahead of the national election later this year. TSI’s chief executive Daniel Fenua says there is anecdotal evidence of candidates taking possession of scores of ID cards. He says the cards are purcahsed from individual voters.
The people of Crimea have spoken. In yesterday’s referendum, they voted overwhelmingly to secede from Ukraine and join Russia. According to Russia’s Itar-Tass news agency, the vote was 93 percent to 7 percent. According to Russia Today, it was 96 percent to 3 percent. It’s an amazing victory. Even more amazing when you consider that according to the most recent census, 37 percent of the Crimean population is ethnically Ukrainian or Tatar. Yet only 3 to 7 percent voted against leaving Ukraine and embracing Mother Russia. To be fair, it’s not quite as amazing as last week’s election in North Korea. There, beloved leader Kim Jong-in was re-elected to the parliament with 100 percent of the vote. The ruling party holds all 687 seats. And last year in Cuba, voters approved 100 percent of the national assembly candidates put forward by official nominating committees. How do exemplary democracies such as Russia, Cuba, and North Korea achieve these mandates? By rigging them, of course.
The Maldives will go ahead with a presidential election run-off on September 28, election commissioner Fuwad Thowfeek said on Thursday, despite a decision by the Supreme Court to postpone the second round following a complaint of vote rigging. Thowfeek’s comments followed mounting international pressure on the government to push ahead with a run-off, amid hopes it could end political turmoil in the Indian Ocean archipelago. The first round of voting, on September 7, was won by ex-president Mohamed Nasheed, whose removal from power 20 months ago ignited months of unrest. He secured 45.45 percent in the first round, short of the 50 percent needed for outright victory, and his party promptly announced mass protests against the postponement.
Jumhoory Party (JP) presidential candidate Gasim Ibrahim who narrowly missed out a place in the second round of the presidential elections held Saturday said that he has asked elections commission for a vote recount. Speaking during a rally on Wednesday, Gasim reiterated that there were major doubts surrounding the results of the first round. According to Gasim, issues such as ballots being cast in the names of deceased people and vote rigging had been noted during the first round. In light of such issues, JP had requested for a recount in the presence of relevant interlocutors, he added.
Officials knowingly transported hundreds of Cambodians to polling stations where they were not qualified to vote, a human rights group charges. A report released by the group Licadho said the voters were “intentionally manipulated” into casting the fraudulent ballots, The Phnom Penh Post reported Monday. In one alleged incident, Licadho said professors at a Phnom Penh university bussed hundreds of their students to a district some miles outside of the city. Other violations occurred, the group alleged, when more than 100 workers at a rock quarry in central Cambodia were taken to a newly created polling station near the national capital to vote.
Human rightts organizations in Zimbabwe were hit by cyber attacks during and after the African country’s election last Thursday, leading to suspicions of government suppression of election monitoring. Techweek Europe reported the attacks on Tuesday, saying that some were obviously targeted while other disruptions might have been merely collateral damage. Following the election, hosting providers in the country were hit by two sophisticated distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks over the weekend that took many websites that had been reporting voting results offline. Apparently the organisations hit included Fair Trade Africa, Privacy International and the Zimbabwe Human Rights Forum, which also told Techweek Europe that it suspected it had been targeted by a hacking attack earlier last week.