The Committee for Open Democracy monitored and observed the November 28, 2010 Parliamentary elections in Moldova and overall found them to be conducted according to international, democratic norms.
The election campaign was highly competitive and represents a positive step in Moldova’s democratic development. Moldovan authorities and commissioners deserve credit for their work on this election.
Nevertheless, there are areas that need improvement:
- The voter registry is outdated and a more accurate method is needed to eliminate deceased voters from the rolls. Moldovan authorities successfully managed a pilot electronic voter registry program in some polling stations in Chisnau. If this program is used nationwide, it will represent an important improvement to the voter registry of Moldova.
- The election law with regard to campaign agitation should be clarified and made consistent. For example, television and radio ads are banned the day before the election and on Election Day. However, billboards are allowed. The Committee recommends that either, all campaigning be banned the day before and on Election Day or all campaigning be allowed during those times. This will eliminate confusion among the voters, parties, commissioners and candidates.
- The election law should lower the barrier for blocs of parties to receive representation in parliament. The current “pass” barrier is prohibitive to parties compromising on common goals and interests. This results in post-election parliamentary deadlocks and ultimately ineffective government. Moldova’s government is paralyzed by this unique and prohibitive system that discourages political compromise.
Overall the election was conducted openly and transparently. The use of administrative resources was less than in previous elections. The election law was liberalized to empower Moldovans living abroad to vote in the election and Moldovan expats responded by voting in large numbers. In addition, a successful pilot project to give blind voters a chance to vote in a specially designed booth is praiseworthy and empowers voters with disabilities. Moldova continues to make important strides in democratic development and free elections.
The Committee for Open Democracy is an American registered, international election observation organization. The Committee consists of veteran election observers from 14 countries including the United States, Canada, Ukraine, Georgia, Greece and Australia. For the November 28, 2010 Parliamentary election in Moldova, the Committee sent 8 veteran election observers from 3 countries to monitor and observe numerous polling stations on Election Day. In addition, several of the observers have previous observation experience in Moldova elections.