THE CENTRAL ELECTION COMMISSION
OF THE REPUBLIC OF UZBEKISTAN
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Briefing of the Observation mission of Association of World Election Bodies
H.E. Kim Yong-Hi, Secretary General, A-WEB
There is a clear difference in the object of the A-WEB’s Election Visitor Program from that of other organization’s observation in that, the latter places importance on monitoring and inspecting the electoral process while A-WEB intends to share knowledge and practices among the member states. It is because A-WEB which is the Association of World Election Bodies, wh ere members of our organization advise each other and take advantages of each others’ experience rather than criticizing it. In other word, we learn and advise each others.
Prior to visiting Uzbekistan, I was slightly skeptical of electoral process due to long reign in the office of the previous President. But during my participation in the conference: “Constitutional & Legal Fundamentals of Head of the State Elections: Experience of Uzbekistan & Developed Democratic Countries”, I have noticed that scholars, officials, civil society spoke freely & openly on the value and progresses of election and democracy. My concerns on fairness of election were well addressed.
The day before election, we visited Tashkent DEC and two PECs in Tashkent and saw how they’ve prepared for the elections. We noticed the strong will of members of commissions to prevent the practice so called ‘family voting’ issue, which some colleagues from the Western World would have been probably concerned as “one man one vote” is one of the main principles of the democracy. We saw that the officers of the polling stations well aware that proxy voting is not allowed.
On the Election day, we visited one polling station in Tashkent and three in Bukhara. The polling stations were well organized and kept in a very good order. They had enough number of voter identification desks, which led to reduce any possible queuing time for voting even if many voters came at same time. I was able to conclude that the CEC has managed election procedure in a realistic and effective way.
When it comes to the voters’ list, in particular, I have been told that the list had been announced fifteen days before the election and could be revised upon requests. I was not able to check the correctness of the list personally, However, I found that CEC has had a capacity to manage the voters’ list in a proper manner and I was also able to confirm the electoral system of Uzbekistan works according to the legal framework.
In Bukhara, I observed counting of the vote at one PEC and I didn’t find any kind of violation and complaints. The officials, members of the PEC, were experienced and sufficient knowledge of the electoral processes.
At the observation of counting in one polling station we saw the one candidate obtained the most of number of votes, which have been expected.
Under such kind of situation, I came to a conclusion that election stake holders, including local volunteers haven’t had any reason to violate election law.
Democracy and election system of each country have been developed its own way, which related to its historical, political, economical and even cultural background. The observers should not have any prejudice and stereotype while monitoring other countries’ election. Before criticizing some electoral process or practices, observers need to clearly understand legal framework, political environment, the development stages of election policy and institution, and the public sentiments at the political circle.
In conclusion, as far as I observed, there occurs no violation of laws and regulations in the electoral processes in the polling stations I visited.
city of Tashkent,
December 5, 2016