Friday, July 15, 2005

SUMATE calls it: no clean elections on August 7

What was expected happened: Sumate has declared that the conditions for the elections of August 7 are not good, that the integrity of the vote is compromised, implying that the vote result will not represent the true will of the country (in English here).

In its main site the NGO describes all that is missing in Venezuela to have free and fair elections:

NO Electoral Registry that can be trusted as to how many and who votes (and how often?)
NO independent audit have taken place as required by the laws (except of course the law of El Supremo?)
NO certainty/trust that the vote will be secret (a better and more expanded Tascon list?)
NO scrutiny or manual counting of all the ballots as the law requires (but a few selected box opened in front of "observers" who will be even more reliable than the Carter Center?)
NO serious international observation planned under acceptable conditions (except for Cuban observers?)

It does not require to be a rocket scientist to understand that there is a serious problem as to how the Venezuelan elections are now run. There is no point for me to go into the details as I have already explained in details all the electoral problems in Venezuela, and I can assure the reader that the situation is getting worse, no better. The Sumate announcement has to be seen as a declaration of confirmation, even as the end of negotiation, a call to action. So, what will do the political parties? After all, Sumate's role ends with that technical evaluation of the August 7 vote. Sumate is not running in any election, is not favoring a particular party within the opposition. Sumate is just saying to the political parties "now you know, take your responsibilities".

Sumate also adds that the CNE will be responsible for the more than usual abstention that will take place during this election (though as some already says, if the CNE can "recount" the votes it can also "verify" the number of voters). Indeed, the abstention debate rages but that will be the subject of a later entry.

Meanwhile elsewhere, at the Inter American Dialogue co chaired by Brazil ex president Cardoso, a recent report states that Venezuela and Haiti can barely be described as democracy. So goes the bolibanana revolution image in the world, and August 7 is apparently far from improving it.

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