CRTA observers: Irregularities at 10 percent of polling stations across Serbia

NEWS 03.04.2022 18:07
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Source: Photo by Arnaud Jaegers on Unsplash

The ‘Crta’ election observer has so far submitted five reports to the police alleging electoral corruption - two reports refer to vote-rigging which observers allegedly witnessed in Kula and Surcin, and three refer to cases of vote-buying in Majdanpek, Zitoradja and Cukarica, said program director Rasa Nedeljkov.

He said that there were sporadic incidents recorded at various polling stations and that Crta would continue to observe the process.

„When I talk about sporadic irregularities within polling stations, the percentage of polling stations where we record this type of irregularity is about 10 percent across Serbia,“ Nedeljkov said at a press conference.

He added that the percentage of polling stations in Belgrade where such irregularities were noticed is five percent.

By 4 pm, 42.1 percent of citizens voted in the elections, with an error margin of 1.1 percent, he said.

The turnout in the 2016 elections until 4 pm was 39.6 percent, and in 2020 34.6 percent, according to Crta.

The organisation said that the first part of the election day was marked by tensions and verbal violence, and cases of physical violence were recorded in front of several polling stations.

It strongly condemned all violent acts and called on all election participants to ensure a fair process.

Large crowds were noticed at the polling stations in Kursumlija, Tutin, Bujanovac and Raska, where voters from Kosovo and Metohija are voting. A large number of buses with voters arrived there in the morning. Polling stations are poorly organised, and the organisation said that several dozen citizens were present at some polling stations at the same time, which made the secrecy of the vote impossible. The increased presence of the police in front of the polling stations was also noticed.

“In those polling stations, with so many people, it is simply impossible to conduct the election process in such a way as to enable the secrecy of the ballot and that people can vote independently,” Nedeljkov said.

The organisation said that it considers that the voting process at these polling stations was compromised.

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