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Statement from the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Abkhazia

SUKHUM, ABKHAZIA

On December 3, 2009 persons empowered to act for the presidential candidates of the Republic of Abkhazia Z. Ardzinba, B. Butba and R. Khadzhimba filed an application to the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Abkhazia regarding the form of the local election commission’s ballot protocol.

Thereupon the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Abkhazia states the following:

On November 2, 2009 the ballot protocol sample of a local election commission was approved by a decision of the Central Election Commission. The protocol was developed in strict conformity with article 17 of the Constitutional Law of the Republic of Abkhazia “About the Presidential Elections in the Republic of Abkhazia” which specifies the exhaustive list of data indicated in the protocols of election commissions both divisional and district. This article specifies that the following data is indicated in protocols of election commissions: 

• number of citizens inscribed in the lists of voters at the presidential elections of the Republic of Abkhazia;
• number of citizens taken part in voting at the presidential elections of the Republic of Abkhazia;
• number of ballot-papers against all presidential candidates of the Republic of Abkhazia;
• number of votes for each presidential candidate of the Republic of Abkhazia;
• number of votes against each presidential candidate of the Republic of Abkhazia;
• number of nullified ballot-papers.

All this information was included in the ballot protocol sample of a local election commission approved by the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Abkhazia. Thus, the content of a local election commission’s ballot protocol was brought to conformity with the electoral legislation of the Republic of Abkhazia.

The referense in the application of the persons empowered to act for the presidential candidates to the fact that the Central Election Commission’s instruction does not require the number of ballot- papers given out by a local election commission by the basic and additional lists of voters to be calculated, is not a legal ground for including the following data in a local election commission’s ballot protocol: number of ballot-papers received by a polling station; number of ballot-papers given out to voters for voting; number of ballot-papers given out for voting outside the polling station; number of citizens voted outside the polling station. Based upon this, the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Abkhazia has come to the conclusion that the persons empowered to act for the presidential candidates’ demand to include the above-mentioned data in a local election commission’s ballot protocol is not based on the law, and reference to the practice existing earlier is invalid and unfounded.

We would also like to remind the lawyers who have prepared this application, the theory of the state and the law, according to which only a contract may be declared null and void; to declare a protocol sample or an instruction null and void is a legal nonsense. We would like the lawyers not to make such mistakes in future preparing applications for persons empowered to act for the presidential candidates of the Republic of Abkhazia.
Meanwhile the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Abkhazia, following the concept of maximum responsiveness of proposals and interests of all the elections participants, informs that it will consider inclusion of additional data in a local election commission’s ballot protocol at the next meeting.

The Chairman of the Central Election Commission of the Republic of Abkhazia B.Tabagua

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