Paraguay: EU observers consider election "transparent"but they ask for space for claims

Paraguay: EU observers consider election "transparent"but they ask for space for claims

May 8, 2023, 18:06 PM

May 8, 2023, 18:06 PM

“We cannot say that the elections have not been transparent. They have been transparent,” Marques said in an interview with EFE, and indicated that they are “aware of what the opposition parties, mainly, are alleging.”

In the general elections, Paraguayans were summoned to elect a president, vice president, deputies, senators, governors, and councilors. The data from the system for the transmission of preliminary electoral results (TREP) indicate that the pro-government Santiago Peña was elected president, with 42.74%, after accounting for 99.94% of the tables.

The independent Paraguayan candidate Cubas -third in the vote- has denounced fraud and has remained in preventive detention since Friday after the protests led by his supporters. The second on the list, the opposition Efraín Alegrehas demanded a manual vote count and an audit.

In this context, the expert affirmed that the EOM EU has posted 124 observers to the 17 departments of the country, in which they visited, among others, 383 polling stations during the electoral day. They have also been present in the 10 electoral tribunals where the scrutiny records are judged. “In all these places, our observers have evaluated the process as transparent, organized, accessible to all and credible,” said Marques, who had already been part of the EU EOM in the 2018 elections in this country.

EU MOE: “Assisted voting in 19% of polling stations visited”

“We continue to say that the elections have been well organized, although, for example, the polling station members do not have training, although the process is managed by the political parties, that there is one or another act that is not correct or that, for example, that there are some bulletins, very few, very few bulletins to compute, because the machine has not read the chip”, illustrated Marques.

“We must also give them space to verify what the complaints say; if they have evidence, they must present it,” said the European observer. “Although our observers have had all this evaluation, we, of course, give value to what the opposition is saying, but we continue to hope that they submit the evidence of all allegations to the electoral authorities”he said, anticipating that they will be equally attentive to the official response.

In reference to the Superior Court of Electoral Justice (TSJE), stressed that he is “making an effort”, Not now, but from the beginning of the process, with audits of computer systems, electronic voting and voting machines, among others.

Among the situations detected by the observers, he mentioned assisted voting in 19% of the polling stations visited. He clarified that in this aspect, the law “is very limiting”, since assistance to vote is only allowed in the cases of people with disabilities in the upper limbs. He also mentioned cases of transport of voters by the parties and vote buying, a fact that he considered should be punished as provided by law.

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