General

Observers suggest poll reforms

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Dec 13, 2017-As the counting of votes of the federal parliament and provincial assembly polls enters its final stage, election observers have suggested that the Election Commission ensure effective voter education, control campaign styles and manage voter identity cards.

In a joint statement on Tuesday, three poll observers—National Election Observation Committee (NEOC), General Election Observation Committee (GEOC) and Inclusive Women Network for Peace, Justice and Democracy (Sankalpa) said the EC needs to improve its performance in areas such as distribution of voter ID cards, establishment of polling centres, management of voters’ queues, voter education programme and controlling of campaign styles by candidates and parties for ensuring free, fair and peaceful elections.

“Many voters were unaware that they needed to stamp on four symbols in three ballot papers. The voters were found confused, particularly with the ballot paper

for the proportional representation category,” the statement said. The EC has already admitted that the voter education programme was less effective due to time constraints.

The groups have also pointed out that many voters were unable to cast their vote despite having voter ID cards due to errors in the voters’ lists.

False promises by candidates and parties, excessive use of campaign materials in violation of the election code of conduct, they said in the statement.

The observers have also urged the government to identify and take action against the individuals and groups responsible for explosions and violence aimed at disrupting the elections. The Netra Bikram Chand-led Communist Party of Nepal has claimed the responsibility for the blasts.

Published: 13-12-2017 08:20

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