Moldova's top court orders recount of snap election

10:40, December 11, 2010      

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Moldova's Constitutional Court on Friday ordered a vote recount in the Nov. 28 early legislative elections, after examining an application by the Communists.

The court argued that voting reports were compiled incorrectly and did not match the voting reports scanned from the Central Election Commission's website, news reaching here reported.

The evidence presented by the Communists was rather convincing, said Constitutional Court President Dumitru Pulbere, stressing there is non-concordance between the figures from the voting reports released to the election contenders after the November 28 elections and the data published on the Central Election Commission's website.

Communist lawyer Sergiu Sarbu said he was satisfied with the decision, adding: "The recounting can not change the election result mandates and key distribution, since most serious violations were committed before the ballots were put in the ballot boxes."

"However, we do not exclude that we will find additional votes for the Communists in the recount of votes," said Sarbu, adding that what happened would be a serious lesson for the electoral authorities.

According to him, the vote recount will probably bring the Communists 1 percent of the votes more.

The Communists submitted Monday a request to the Constitutional Court for a recount of the vote and over 200 proofs were annexed in the application to confirm the illegality of the November 28 election.

Sarbu said his party cannot bring proofs from polling places, since the access of their observers to the election was limited. However, they are convinced that calculation mistakes were made all over the country and there was multiple voting. He warned that if multiple voting was proved, his party would demand the election result be declared invalid.

The Central Election Commission will have seven days to recount the votes, said Court President Pulbere, adding that if the commission can not finish the recount by December 16, when the Constitutional Court is to validate the election outcome, the term will be extended.

The Central Election Commission is to decide in an extraordinary meeting when to start the recount.

Moldova held a snap election on Nov. 28, the country's third parliamentary race in one and a half years.

The country, landlocked between Romania and Ukraine, has been in a long-time political stalemate as the parliament could not elect a head of state.

Under the constitution, the parliament elects the head of state and if no candidate gets the required 61 votes in the 101-seat parliament in two rounds of vote, the parliament will be dissolved.

According to the final results unveiled Monday by the Central Electoral Commission, the Communists would get 42 out of 101 parliamentary seats, the Liberal Democrats 32, the Democrats 15 and the Liberals 12.

The new configuration of the parliament indicated a still uncertain political situation in the country, since neither the Communists which got most votes, nor the three parties that are in the ruling coalition have enough seats to ensure that their presidential candidate is elected.

The just-dissolved parliament was elected in the July 2009 and is made up of 48 deputies of the Communist Party, 18 of the Liberal Democratic Party, 15 of the Liberal Party, 13 of the Democratic Party and seven of Our Moldova Alliance. The latter four parties formed a ruling coalition.

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