Just several weeks ahead of Election Day, Ukraine’s parliamentary campaign is already full of violations of election legislation that could affect the results and the vote’s legitimacy. Observers from OPORA, the largest domestic election monitoring group, point out increasing number of incidents of campaign violations, among them bribing voters, use of government resources of local authorities to the advantage of some parties and candidates, obstruction in election campaigning, unfair campaigning, use of law enforcement for campaign help and pressure on news media. “We have clearly determined that the [use of] administrative resources and [vote] bribing are those factors that may influence the outcome of [upcoming parliamentary] elections,” said Olha Ayvazovska, coordinator of electoral programs at OPORA, but could not elaborate whether this impact would be significant saying that it is too early to provide a final judgment as the campaign is not over yet.
Ukraine’s parliamentary election is scheduled to take place on Oct. 28. Half of the 450-seat parliament will be elected through closed party lists. The other 225 seats will be distributed among winners of the election in single mandate constituencies. According to OPORA’s election monitoring report, which was made public on Oct. 3, in September the organization’s long-term observers documented 179 incidents of use of administrative resources, which is abuse of power by officials in Ukraine, in helping to campaign select candidates and parties, 126 incidents of voter bribing, 123 cases of obstruction in political campaigning, 77 cases of unfair campaigning, 12 cases of law-enforcement intrusion in campaign, and 9 incidents of pressure on media.
Full Article: Violations build up as Election Day approaches.