District election commissions for local elections to be held on February 18 next year have been formed in Belarus. It is these bodies that will register election candidates, receive complaints and solve the majority of organizational issues. Around 10,500 people were selected to work in more than 18 thousand polling districts.
Only several opposition activists ended up in the Commission.
In most places, the vote was list-based and not for individual candidates, due to lack of competition. Where the place in the commission was claimed by the representatives of the opposition parties, the number of candidates magically increased. It was the reason why the opponents of the government, with minor exceptions, did not get seats in the commissions.
Statistics says, loyalty to government matters.
The chances of pro-regime candidate to become a member of the district commission are 9 out of 10, while an opposition candidate has less than one in five chance to do the same. The authorities are not concerned with this political situation.
Lidziya Yarmoshyna has long formed the idea that the Commission is a working body, where everyone should be cozy and comfortable, and no one should interfere.
What we see is a situation which is convenient for the current political regime.
Last year, during the parliamentary elections, the House of Representatives got one representative of the opposition party and one independent opposition candidate. The matter lies in the main mystery of the Belarusian elections — the vote count.
Therefore, the question of membership of any political party in the district commissions is secondary.
Ihar Kuley, “Belsat”, photo: Vasily Fedosenko / Reuters / Forum