Results of Ozurgeti PEC #59 Should Remain Valid
Events after the vote count at polling station #59 (Nasakirali settlement) of Ozurgeti #60 electoral district create substantial suspicions that there was a focused attempt to create disturbances at the precinct which would result in its annulment. Based on full observation of the voting and tabulation process, ISFED underscores that there is no substantial ground for annulment of the PEC #59 as the integrity of elections at the polling station is not threatened.
ISFED confirms that the independent candidate obtained the majority of votes at the PEC #59 and the results of the precinct impact the outcome of the mayoral elections in Ozurgeti.
Following the vote count and tabulation process at the #59 Nasakirali precinct filling of the summary protocol was unreasonably delayed due to indisposition of the PEC chair. Within this period, after midnight, a group of individuals with badges of accreditation broke into the polling station and prevented the commission members from fulfilling their duties and completing the summary protocol. Despite this, the PEC members protected the electoral documentation and ensured its security. Filling the summary protocol became possible only at a later stage, after the intruders left the precinct. Of note is the fact that the PEC chair initially refused to sign the summary protocol. Such refusal is against the electoral legislation as all PEC members are obliged to sign the summary protocol and write a dissenting opinion in case of any disagreement.
Besides, at the same polling station, valid votes with clear indication of voters’ choice in favor of the independent candidate were considered invalid by the precinct commission during the counting process. ISFED has filed a complaint with the DEC on the issue.
Based on the events at Nasakirali precinct, ISFED believes that there was an attempt to cancel the precinct since at this PEC and, based on its results, in Ozurgeti district as a whole, the independent candidate was ahead.
Despite the irregularities, the integrity of electoral documentation was not threatened and the summary protocol reflected the will of the voters.
ISFED calls on everyone involved in the electoral process, regardless of their own interests, to respect the will of the voters first and foremost.