This component seeks to promote a more inclusive and more transparent electoral process. EEF will support CSO campaigns that will promote the electoral rights of persons with disabilities. In addition, building on the experience from previous electoral processes, pressure will be exercised on political parties to increase gender representation and ensure transparency of campaign finance.
EEF predecessor, Eurasia Foundation Moldova (EFM), has played a unique role in the promotion of free and fair elections in Moldova. In 2005, it facilitated the creation of the Civic Coalition for Free and Fair Elections, which united more than 200 member organizations. Since then, the Coalition has been active during parliamentary and local elections. EEF was also instrumental in supporting the programs of the Coalition, which included nation-wide voter education and get-out-to-vote campaigns, long-term and short-term election monitoring, including conducting parallel vote tabulation, media monitoring, legal assistance to citizens and journalists in electoral matters, promoting gender equality in the electoral process and conducting exit polls.
The Early Parliamentary elections from November 2010 and General Local Elections from 2011 met most of Moldova’s international commitments. As pointed out by OSCE/ODIHR missions, the election campaigns were competitive and offered voters a genuine choice. While the latest international and domestic parliamentary election observation reports pointed to significant improvements in organization and administration of the elections, further challenges remain in the area of transparency of political party finance, reduced participation in elections of rural and disadvantaged women, Roma, access to vote of persons with disabilities, capacitating the judiciary to apply coherently the national and international human rights law in adjudicating electoral complaints and disputes.
Similar issues remain valid for local elections. None of the relevant bodies actively undertook measures to address breaches of campaign financing regulations. Political parties did not specifically address the issues related to the participation of women in their campaign programs and activities. Moreover, usually women are not placed in winnable positions in the parties candidates’ lists, which substantially decrease the chances that elected public authorities would be balanced from the gender perspective. This way, the observers noted that remaining legal, administrative and regulatory issues need to be further considered in order to ensure continued progress.
Support will be offered for carrying out independent monitoring of electoral campaign financing. Additionally, EEF will advocate for better representation of women in the national parliament and local governments and for a better access of people with physical and mental disabilities to the electoral process.
EEF will provide expert support to its partners in these particular areas, helping to conduct research, offering best practices in the region and worldwide. During the parliamentary elections, to take place in 2014, EEF will support a sampled approach to election observation, in this way ensuring the cost-effectiveness of the effort.
This program will be implemented during 2012-2016.