Election observation report not for sale, but for systematising polls: CEC Thapaliya

Published On: December 27, 2019 05:02 PM NPT By: RSS

KATHMANDU, Dec 27: The Election Commission (EC) onwards is to monitor the election observers. Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Dinesh Kumar Thapaliya during a review of by election observation report here today shared the EC plan of bringing those people and organisations to be deputed as observers in the future elections under its scrutinization. The program was organised by the National Election Observation Committee (NEOC). The permission to observe the election is not a right, but it is a duty, responsibility and accountability and a report prepared by observers, their learning, conclusion, understanding and experience is not for sale, but should be targeted as making the election systematic, according to him. Stating that a call center that was brought into operation during the election time had now been established on the EC premises with arrangements of required facilities, he said, "We are encouraged to see a rise in the organisation's image and prestige through the by-election." On the occasion, it was shared that a committee comprising one representative from each election observation organisations has been formed for the monitoring of observation teams. It is said the EC took the decision in response to complaints about the violation of code of conduct at the polling centers and booths by members in the observation teams. The CEC pledged the improvement in the image of EC which seems hectic during the election time and spending leisurely time in the rest of the days. "Online registration of voters and expansion of voter's education are in the offing." The EC is doing homework to include voter's education in the Public Service Commission, securities bodies, Nepal Administrative Staff College and Local Development Training Academy's training syllabus, it is shared on the occasion. He stressed the need of finding a cause of a turnout, less than expected, in the recent by-election. "What caused the people to lose interest in voting, will be investigated," he said, acknowledging that to encourage voters remained a challenge for the EC. Former CEC Dr Ayodhi Prasad Yadav demanded that the EC be given the right to exercise its constitutional rights, suggesting the incorporation of election-related education in the school and university curriculum. He advised the EC to proceed with a schedule of the local level election. Another former CEC Surya Prasad Shrestha was of the view that there would be no situation of spending more budget for security purposes than in the entire election process if political parties and candidates were abided by the code of conduct and did nothing capable of jeopardising the election process. NEOC general secretary Dr. Gopal Krishna Shiwakoti said it seemed that candidates during the recent by-elections failed to maintain the ceiling of election expenditures. It advised the EC to ensure the franchise of those voters staying abroad, earlier voting for those employees to be deputed in the election and the use of technology to make the election process and voting proficient and systematic. The EC has thanked the NEOC for its efforts at making the election free, fair and impartial with the control of extravagance.

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