The election observation mission from the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) for the February 24 parliamentary elections in Moldova opened formally its activities on January 16, 2019. The mission will observe the elections for their compliance with OSCE commitments and other international obligations and standards for democratic elections, IPN reports.
In a news conference, Matyas Eorsi, the head of the ODIHR election observation mission, said the mission consists of a core team of 11 legal, electoral and media experts and 28 long-term observers who will be deployed in teams of two across the country as of January 23. In addition, ODIHR will request that OSCE participating States provide 250 short-term observers to monitor proceedings on election day. These are to arrive in the Republic of Moldova several days before election day.
Matyas Eorsi said that until now they had two meetings with officials in Chisinau, with representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration and of the Central Election Commission. They will later have meetings with electoral contenders, representatives of state institutions, parties, international community, civil society and of national and regional media outlets.
“Our role is to present reports based on facts and our findings. It is very important to understand that we do not intervene in this process at any level. We are not here for the sake of the election results, no matter what they are. We are here to make sure the elections are held in full compliance with the democratic principles. Our whole activity is based on the principles of impartiality, transparency, professionalism,” stated Matyas Eorsi, noting this is the 14th election that the ODIHR mission will observe in the Republic of Moldova.
Observers will closely monitor the candidate registration process, campaign activities, the work of the election administration and relevant governmental bodies, election-related legislation and its implementation, and the resolution of election-related disputes. On election day, observers will monitor the opening of polling stations, voting, the counting of ballots and the tabulation of results. For election day, the ODIHR election observation mission will join efforts with delegations from the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and the European Parliament.
A statement of preliminary findings and conclusions will be issued on the day after the elections. A final report on the observation of the entire electoral process will be published approximately two months after the completion of the electoral process. The ODIHR will publish a final report with recommendations, which will be sent to the Moldovan authorities and placed on its website.
The ODIHR election observation mission and the OSCE Mission to Moldova operate separately and independently, based on own mandates.