OSCE is monitoring Bosnia's general election situation

OSCE is monitoring Bosnia's general election situation Izvor: Facebook

The OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina is aware of the allegations of election fraud and are closely monitoring the developments, said the OSCE responding to N1’s question for a comment on the growing number of allegations of election fraud.

"The OSCE Mission to Bosnia has been supporting the Bosnia’s Central Election Commission (CEC BiH) in conducting fair and transparent elections through numerous activities, the latest being the introduction of translucent ballot boxes and extensive trainings for the members of the municipal election commissions and polling station committees," the OSCE said. "All this, together with our ongoing support to the CEC, is aimed at helping restore the trust of citizens in the election process, in Bosnia or of those that vote from out of the country."

They told N1 that they are aware of the fact that much more needs to be done to achieve that goal and to fully ensure there can be no electoral fraud.

"Part of this relates to strengthening the process through which the voter registry is managed and updated. In practice, this is a shared responsibility of the Agency for Identification Documents, Registers and Data Exchange of Bosnia and Herzegovina (IDDEEA), CEC BiH, ministries of interiors and Municipal Public Record Offices," they noted.

"Another part relates to ensuring that measures to prevent fraud are up-to-date. This, for example, includes the online tool that citizens can use to check their voter registration," the OSCE added

They called on all citizens to vote in the general election, but also to report any irregularities and stressed that Bosnian authorities must be responsive to such reports and provide adequate information to the general public.

"It is worth noting that the CEC BiH has been responsive to complaints about other allegations of electoral fraud and referred matters to the state Prosecutors office," the OSCE noted.

The Mission also touched upon the growing number of voters who discovered they were registered to vote somewhere else, away from their places of residence.

Most often these cases were reported by local residents who discovered that someone had changed their personal information and place of residence where the voting material was already sent for them to vote from abroad. Or by Bosnian citizens voting from abroad who said they never received any voting material.

"Revocation of voter’s rights for out of country voters is a question for politicians to consider but out of country voting for expatriates in general elections is normal practice in most European countries," the mission stressed and added: "Please note that the OSCE Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights is responsible for the observation of the elections. They do so independently from the OSCE Mission to BiH."

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