Arthur Sakunts, Representative of “Independent Observer” Public Alliance, Head of Helsinki Citizens' Assembly Vanadzor Office, says that they conducted an observation in 200 polling stations which comprised 10% of all the voters.
“The forces that won the elections, and celebrate it, should be considered a feast during the plague because what we witnessed yesterday cannot be celebrated. My main conclusion is that our government is seriously ill, we should think thoroughly, to restore or at least to suspend the disease process,” Sakunts said.
He said that state institutions, political parties, intellectuals, NGOs, and journalists should think over one question, why we reached this day when a bribe is publicly called a donation or salary.
“Citizens became vassals to such a degree that they can vote in favor of the party that took the state to poverty, migration, external and internal security serious issues. This is really worrying that the party can get so many votes from the citizens,” Sakunts said.
Avetik Ishkhanyan, Chairman of the Helsinki Committee of Armenia, says that the elections have been dishonored year by year.
“During the last elections, election observation missions were also dishonored, when some observer groups replaced their badges with the badges of the Prosperous Armenia and the Republican Party. Observers working for the Republican Party had greater authority than proxies. The observers even directed the people,” Ishkhanyan said.
Levon Barseghyan, Board Chairman ofJournalists' Club “Asparez”, says that violations were recorded in 1/3 of the polling stations which is a fantastic big number.
“The greatest problem was controllable open voting. One or several ballots were provided to citizens or a voter said that he needed only one ballot. Equipment failures constituted a large percentage.”
Daniel Ioannisyan, "Informed Citizens Association" NGO, said that the election violations had an impact on the election results.
“Though some violations were procedural, the number of double voting or voting instead of other person has declined. There were serious problems with discipline in the polling stations. People without a right were at the 20 per cent of polling stations for a long time. Arguments and fights were recorded in 38 percent of polling stations, power belonged to proxies rather than the President of the Commission in 25 percent cases,” Ioannsiyan said.
Varujan Hoktanyan, Program Manager atTransparency International Global Anti-Corruption Organization, considers the parties to be the reason of the situation.
“The reason is the degeneracy of the party idea. The destruction of this idea. The party must understand that it exists not for several mandates but it should strive for power. Such a party we do not have,” Hoktanyan said.
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Lilit Arakelyan, editor/events coordinator at “Media Center”
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