AKIPRESS.COM - The 2020 parliamentary elections in Tajikistan took place in a tightly controlled environment in which there was no space left for a pluralistic political debate and voters did not have genuine political alternatives to choose from. Operational aspects of the elections appeared to be efficiently administered. These are some of the main conclusions from the final report on Tajikistan’s parliamentary elections of 1 March 2020, as published by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR).
The final report, published on 27 May 2020, also states that significant efforts are needed to align the electoral process with Tajikistan’s OSCE commitments and standards for democratic elections. It offers 23 recommendations to improve the conduct of elections and increase the transparency in the electoral process.
Key recommendations included:
- A comprehensive review of the electoral legal framework in an open and inclusive manner
- Enabling journalists to carry out their professional duties freely by reducing interference from state authorities
- Ensuring the independence of election administration members by providing adequate transparency and accountability measures during the selection process
- Improving the accuracy of voter lists, including through the introduction of a permanent, centralized voter register
- Providing independent, non-partisan citizen election observation
- Robust procedures for counting and tabulating results, developed and adhered to at all levels of election administration in order to enhance integrity and transparency
- Publishing full preliminary and final election results in a timely manner, in line with basic principles for transparency and accountability.
ODIHR deployed an Election Assessment Mission on 13 February 2020 to observe the parliamentary elections. All 57 countries across the OSCE region have formally committed to following up promptly on ODIHR’s election assessments and recommendations.