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Post-electoral conference in Gagauzia

Comrat 3 December 2021
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Post-electoral conference in Gagauzia

Over 40 representatives of the national and regional authorities, political parties, development partners, civil society and media took part in the online post-electoral conference on 3 December 2021. The objective of the conference was to analyse the context in which the People’s Assembly Elections in the Autonomous Territorial Unit Gagauzia (ATU Gagauzia) of the Republic of Moldova were held, including from the institutional, legal and youth perspectives. Elections took place on 19 September 2021 and runoff on 3 October 2021.

Mr. William Massolin, Head of the Council of Europe Office in Chisinau, underlined that the conference touches subjects of interest to both national and regional level authorities on improving cooperation between electoral management bodies and electoral stakeholders, recommendations of electoral observation mission, Ombudsman office in Comrat and civil society’s opinions on ensuring the access to vote for as many people as possible, including those with special needs, timely communication of the electoral results, compiling of voters’ rolls, electoral complaints resolution and what the ways are to bring up the capacities of the CEC of Gagauzia to operate in more transparent and inclusive manner. And last but not least, determination of the status of the permanent electoral body of Gagauzia in the electoral administrative system of the Republic of Moldova.

Mrs. Irina VLAH, Governor (Bashkan) of the ATU Gagauzia, thanked to the Council of Europe for the opportunity to share some thoughts on the recent elections in the People's Assembly of Gagauzia. In her opinion the two most harmfull problems georpardazing the electoral process and results are disinformation and manipulation over electoral campaigns that could distorte public trust and affect the attitude of people towards candidates, and ultimately undemined the election results. The second issue is the registration of new residents in electoral constituencies - people who de facto do not live there. Thus, the voice of the real residents of these constituencies may be diluted or even does not be decisive at all. And then the people who not represent the will of the inhabitants of the constituencies will get to the People's Assembly.

Mrs. Iana Covalenko, Chairwoman of the Central Electoral Commission of ATU Gagauzia, pointed out that this important event for the Central Electoral Commission of Gagauzia (CEC Gagauzia) is being held for the first time and with the support of the Council of Europe within the framework of the Project “Improving electoral practice in the Republic of Moldova, Phase II”. Mrs. Covalenko expressed her belief that the conference provides an excellent platform to jointly find a solution to further develop and increase the potential of the CEC Gagauzia improvement of electoral practices in the conduct of certain types of elections in Gagauzia.

During the conference, representatives of the national and regional authorities, development partners, civil society and the Court of Appeal Comrat debated on recommendations of the national election experts and generated plausible solutions for improvement of the electoral process at the regional level. As well, participants examined institutional and financial issues related to the elections, including the organisation and conduct of the elections, as well as the financing of the electoral campaign. Other key topics listened to were the analysis on participation of young people from ATU Gagauzia in the elections and prospects of informational automated electoral processes in the region in line with good international and of the Republic of Moldova electoral practices.

The Conference was organized in co-operation with the Central Electoral Commission of the ATU Gagauzia within the Council of Europe Project Improving Electoral Practice in the Republic of Moldova, Phase II.

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