The president of Bosnia’s Central Election Commission (CEC), Suad Arnautovic, said at a press conference on Friday that the delay and omissions in the vote counting process are the result of the failure of local polling committees to complete their job timely.
The CEC's press conference comes five days after the elections. Due to non-fulfilment of the legal obligations of the polling committees, the CEC was prevented from presenting the election results 24 hours after the election.
He said the deadlines were not met after the CEC ordered a recount at about 1,000 polling stations due to complaints of election irregularities.
“The deadline for the execution of that order was Wednesday at midnight, and again 11 electoral municipal commissions did not meet the deadline. The polling committees from the polling stations to which the orders refer did not do their work according to law, they counted the votes incorrectly and sealed the bags. I don't think that the training for polling committees is the reason for their poor work, but that they were appointed by political subjects and while they have such a monopoly, we will have this procedure and practice,” he said.
Arnautovic also pointed out the CEC's previous efforts to introduce new technologies into the election process and that the institution proposed an initiative to amend and supplement the election law, which provided for the improvement of the election process.
“It was an effort to introduce scanners, electronic voting. We brought in an expert from Estonia who gave us an analysis of the electoral system and proposed measures. We forwarded it to the Parliament for adoption. We are not legislators and we do not make laws,” he said.
At the press conference, the members of the CEC said that many municipalities had problems and missed the deadlines and that it is suspected that there were a number of irregularities.
They announced that before the results are published, the votes from those municipalities will be counted at the main polling station in Sarajevo.