It Is Allowed to Enter the Polling Station after 8 p.m.

As it is known, during elections journalists, observers and proxies often have problems related to entering the polling station after 8 p.m.

Though, in fact, neither the old nor the new electoral codes banned the entrance of journalists, observers and proxies to the polling station after 8 o’clock in the evening (in contrast to regulations operating before 2011), neither was there any clear provision allowing it. Precinct and territorial electoral commissions often saw this legislative ambiguity as acting to the detriment of observers, mass media representatives and proxies.

In order to avoid misinterpretation of the Code, Union of Informed Citizens NGO had appealed to the Central Electoral Commission, which gave an official explanation on the relevant provisions of the Electoral Code.

In particular, the Central Electoral Commission clarified that persons who have the right to be present during the vote count can also enter the polling station after the start of vote count session, that is, after 8 p.m.

Hence, hereinafter it is incontestable that entrance to the polling station after 8 p.m. is denied only to the voters, and observers, proxies, mass media representatives and even candidates can freely enter and exit any polling station during the whole process of vote count.

Moreover, this official explanation by the Central Electoral Commission means that the policemen controlling the polling stations are obliged to allow persons having the right to be present in the vote count session to enter the polling station without waiting for special permission by the head of precinct electoral commission.

Union of Informed Citizens

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