Today, April 4, 2013 was signed the Integrity Pact for Free, Fair and Democratic Elections in Bulgaria. The document is elaborated by 8 non-governmental organizations which will conduct independent civil monitoring of the forthcoming parliamentary elections. The main objective of the initiative is implementation of civil control on the activities of political parties and institutions, engaged in the electoral process, and conduct of free, fair and democratic elections in accordance to the requirement of the Bulgarian legislation and international standards.
The Integrity Pact, proposed by the non-governmental organizations was signed by 16 political parties – “Citizens for European Development for Bulgaria”, “Bulgarian Socialist Party”, “Movement for Rights and Freedom”, “Democrats for a Strong Bulgaria”, “Union of Democratic Forces”, “United Agrarians”, “Bulgarian Social Democratic Party”, “Order, Law and Justice”, “Movement Bulgaria of the Citizens”, Coalition “Bulgarian Spring” (“Bulgarian Social Democracy” and “Party of the Greens”), Coalition “Proud Bulgaria” (“Civic Alliance for Real Democracy”, “Free Nation”, “United Labor Block”, Union of Patriotic Forces “Defense” and Christian Social Union), “Bulgarian Democratic Alliance – Radicals”, “Democratic Alternative for National Unity”, “Bulgarian Women’s Party” and “The New Time”.
“We are on the side of the citizens who want the electoral process and the discussion about it to be held under rules characteristic for the democratic societies.” – The political scientist and Chairman to the Board of Transparency International – Bulgaria, Ognyan Minchev expressed his position.
Antoniy Galabov, an expert of the organization expressed his hope for high voter turnout on the forthcoming elections in May: “Our joint efforts will prompt more people to vote and this will additionally reduce the effects of vote-buying”.
“By this initiative we can contribute to the improvement of the legislative solutions for the forthcoming series of elections. We would like thank our colleagues from the non-governmental organizations and the political parties who joined us.” the Executive Director of Transparency International – Bulgaria, Kalin Slavov said.
The main objective of the Pact is to commit the political parties to the conduct of election campaigns in accordance to the standards for transparency and accountability, and to the implementation of measures preventing violations of the citizens’ voting rights, as well as better organization of the electoral process.
The document also envisions that the non-governmental organizations will implement a civil monitoring, based on the principles of independence, political impartiality and constructive dialogue with all participants in the electoral process, will alert the institutions with regard to identified violations, and will provide information about the monitoring results to the public.
The full text of the Appeal by the Civil Coalition and the Integrity Pact is available online on the following address: http://www.transparency.bg/en/izbori-2013/.
Initiators of the civil coalition for monitoring of the electoral process: Transparency International – Bulgaria, Bulgarian School of Politics “Dimitry Panitza”, European Institute, European Information Centre, Institute for Social Integration, Centre for Liberal Strategies, Centre for Policy Modernisation, Center for Independent Living
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Transparency International – Bulgaria (Coordinator of the initiative)
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