Serious irregularities reported at Serbian local elections

Serious irregularities reported at Serbian local elections

Serious irregularities reported at Serbian local elections Izvor: N1

Irregularities were registered at the local elections in the western Serbian town of Lucani, the CRTA observer mission said on Monday, adding that the atmosphere on election day was not in line with the standards for free and fair elections.

“The conditions were not in place for the voters to express their will freelygiven the conditions which included a campaign by state officials and pressure on the voters and numerous irregularities,” mission chief Rasa Nedeljkov said.

Incidents of pressure on observers and polling station staff were also reported.

A total of 11,738 voters turned out in Lucani on Sunday, or 71 percent of the registered voters which is a record high for that municipality since 2004, CRTA said in a press release.

Serbian opposition parties fielded candidates for the local elections in Lucani but boycotted local elections in the municipalities of Kladovo, Doljevac and Kula.

“Greater irregularites were registerd at 12 of the total of 43 polling stations, including voting without ID, violations of secrecy of the ballot, not using invisible spray and UV lamps and parallel voter rolls,” CRTA said. It said that lesser regularities were recorded at 11 other polling stations such party promotional materials less than 50 metres from the ballot box and the use of mobile phones at polling stations.

CRTA observer mission mobile teams reported more than 200 cars with out of town licence plates and cars without licence plates driving around the municipality while their occupants spoke to voters and polling station staff. “Unidentified persons checked the ID of voters in front of the polling station,” CRTA said.

CRTA also reported that its accredited observer team had their tires slashed and were prevented from entering polling stations by unidentified persons and came under verbal attack by staff at two polling stations.

According to preliminary results, the candidate list Aleksandar Vucic – Because we love Lucani and Dragacevo won 66.9 percent of the vote, followed by the opposition Alliance for Serbia – Alliance for Dragacevo with 9.7 percent.  

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