The Civic Coalition for Free and Fair Elections expresses its support for the national election monitoring mission conducted by Promo-Lex Association, rejecting the repeated denigrating attacks on the mission. During several electoral campaigns of different levels, which they have monitored in the country and abroad, the experts of the observation mission have demonstrated that they have the necessary qualifications in the field of election monitoring.

The findings and conclusions provided in two reports on the mission (reports no. 1 and no. 2) represent a consistent statement of facts and phenomena observed and reported in the course of several electoral campaigns, but which have not yet been settled. The approaching event of the parliamentary elections of 24 February 2019 only highlights harmful behaviours and practices that have been rooted over the years instead of being eliminated.

The issues to which the detractors of the observation mission refer (see the press release of the Democratic Party of Moldova and statement of Ilan ȘOR (min. 16.00-16.50)) appear not because of the lack of any methodology or subjective attitude of the experts, but because of some confusion deliberately created by those who hold the levers of power. Namely they accept the instant practice by the political parties and their distinguished members of political activity, business, charity, media and propaganda, religious activities, etc. This kind of interspersed activity creates such a confusion that even the most perfect methodology cannot clear out.

Our approach as citizens is based on the most simple and healthy methodology – common sense. We believe that we have been forming a pool of voters, a seamless quality, since the declaration of the independence of the Republic of Moldova. That is why we ask ourselves and ask the detractors – what methodology is required to understand unequivocally the provisions of Article 1811 of the Criminal Code, which expressly refers to electoral corruption: “Offering or giving money, goods, services or other benefits in order to determine the voter to exercise or not to exercise his/her electoral rights during parliamentary, presidential, local elections or at the referendum”?

If we accept another interpretation of Article 1811, that some acts constitute acts of corruption only if done on the Election Day, then don’t we offend the citizens, qualifying them as some amnesiacs, who do not remember who their “benefactors” were, which political parties and party leaders organized free of charge concerts with the participation of superstars, offered them packs with food products, gifts for young families, etc.? This kind of practice has been constantly reported by the observers, as well as the electoral folklore that makes them laugh. Therefore, there is an urgent need that the public authorities search for clear, unequivocal solutions to delimit political parties and their leaders in their activity concerning charity, religion, business and media propaganda. This is vitally necessary, because the legislation, in principle, provides for different forms of organization that can be used for exercising such activities. Also, it is required to have a clear delimitation between the governmental activity and that of the party. Especially as long as the parties represent social segments, and the Government administers the public affairs of the entire country.

The declaration is signed by the member organizations of the Civic Coalition for Free and Fair Elections and is open for signature.

Organizations that have subscribed to the declaration:

Centre for Journalistic Investigations (CIJ)

Asociația pentru Politică Externă

Centrul Analitic Independent Expert-Grup

Institutul pentru Politici și Reforme Europene (IPRE)