Transparency International Georgia’s Statement on Current Electoral Processes (07:00 - 12:00)
According to Transparency International Georgia’s monitoring, the 2020 parliamentary elections are proceeding in a calm environment. A large majority of the polling stations were our stationary observers have been deployed opened on time. However, a larger number of irregularities have been observed compared with the 2018 presidential election.
We have identified some 100 minor and relatively more serious violations. Our observers have filed 15 complaints. Of the significant violations, the following merit mentioning:
Expulsion of observers
Our organization’s observer was expelled from the electoral precinct #09.12.15 in Gurjaani after the observer detected that a person was entering the booth along with a voter. Also, there were attempts to expel our observes from electoral precincts #09.12.01 in Gurjaani and #26.70.17 in Poti, although the decisions were subsequently reversed.
Violation of vote secrecy (unfolded ballots and cameras close to booths)
There have been instances of violation of the secrecy of vote. Specifically, in the electoral precincts in #15.32.03 Gori and in #17.37.04 Akhaltsikhe, voters who had left the voting booths showed their ballots to individuals standing nearby. The case in Akhaltsikhe is particularly noteworthy since the ballot box supervisor asked all voters to show their ballots, thereby violating the secrecy of vote. In several polling stations, stationary video cameras were installed too close to the voting booths, creating the danger of control over the voters’ expression of their will. Such precincts were #11.28.37 in Dusheti and #15.32.28 in Gori.
Violation of lottery procedure
In precincts in #12.21.14 Akhaltsikhe, #13.22.85 in Marneuli, in #14.24.46 Dmanisi, and #02.02.31 in Vake the lottery required to divide roles among commission members either did not take place at all or did take place but the relevant rules were not followed.
Recording of voters inside polling stations
There has been a pattern of media organization Newpost’s representatives’ taking photos of all voters inside polling stations and sending them via special software.
Late opening of polling stations
Polling stations opened late in precincts #06.07.07 in Nadzaladevi,#23.59.122 in Kutaisi, #28.79.14 in Batumi, and #22.58.30 in Tsqaltubo.
Presence of unauthorized individuals inside or near polling stations
Individuals without badges were present inside the polling station #12.21.14 in Gardabani. They were notably aggressive and the commission chairperson did not react to this. These people later put on the badges. We have informed the police about the case and they are looking into it.
Violation of Covid-19-related safety rules
Throughout the country, there has been a pattern of violation of the rules designed to prevent the spread of the covid infection. In multiple polling stations, commission members did not wear protective shields, distancing was often not observed, and the rules of wearing face masks were violated.
Problems concerning filing of complaints
In precinct #14.24.46 in Dmanisi, the commission secretary refused to accept a complaint from our observer. The problem was resolved following intervention by the district electoral commission.
Voting without inking
In precincts #11.28.01 in Dusheti and #10.18.04 in Akhmeta, voting without inking occurred.
Campaigning in polling station
An instance of campaigning was detected in precinct #14.26.10 in Tetritsqaro.
About the electoral mission
Transparency International Georgia is monitoring the 31 October 2020 parliamentary elections through 600 local observers. The organization’s stationary observers will be deployed to 400 electoral precincts across the country, while some 100 mobile groups will also monitor the electoral processes.
Transparency International Georgia will hold three press conferences at the Media Center at 12:30, 17:00, and 20:00, presenting the provisional findings of election-day monitoring. The final assessment will be presented at 10:30 on 1 November. Additional statements could be made if necessary.
Election-day violations can be reported via our hotline number: 2 92 14 03.