Cote d'Ivoire to set up "committee of experts" to monitor election tally

16:27, October 25, 2010      

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Cote d'Ivoire's Prime Minister Guillaume Soro announced on Sunday that a "committee of experts" would be set up to monitor the vote tallying exercise after the Oct. 31 presidential elections.

The move followed a decision by the country's Independent Electoral Commission (CEI) to resort to manual vote counting method.

"After extensive consultations, the prime minister has strongly recommended the setting up of an independent committee of experts, " according to a statement from the prime minister's office.

The "committee of experts" should be composed of technocrats from the prime minister's office, CEI, the representative of Burkina Faso's president who is the mediator in Cote d'Ivoire's crisis, a Swiss information and technology firm and the United Nations Operation in Cote d'Ivoire (ONUCI).

CEI decided to do manual counting of votes following complaints that one of the officials of SILS Technology, which is the IT company given the responsibility of carrying out computer aided vote tallying, was a close confidant to outgoing President Laurent Gbagbo.

The statement indicated that the prime minister wanted to avert any possible dispute and increase transparency during the elections.

"The committee of experts in collaboration with SILS Technology will securely transmit presidential election results," the statement affirmed.

The statement pledged that the "committee of experts" will carry out its functions without any interference with the responsibilities of CEI, the only organization charged with the duty of announcing provisional electoral results.

The prime minister reiterated in the statement that the Oct. 31 elections will be free and fair and that no kind of manipulation would be permitted.

Source: Xinhua

(Editor:赵晨雁)

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