Seminar on conduct of elections starts in Opatija
The seminar "A survey of the 2007 parliamentary election - recommendations for the improvement of the election process" started in Opatija on Thursday. The event, organised by the State Election Commission (DIP) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP), focuses on preparations for and conduct of Croatia‘s last parliamentary election.
OPATIJA, Jan 31 (Hina) - The seminar "A survey of the 2007 parliamentary election - recommendations for the improvement of the election process" started in Opatija on Thursday.
The event, organised by the State Election Commission (DIP) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP), focuses on preparations for and conduct of Croatia's last parliamentary election. Following an analysis of the polls, a discussion will be held on recommendations for the improvement of the election process and administration, for the training and education of voter committees and election commissions, for the media coverage of elections, the improvement of voter registers, and for in- and out-of-country voting.
The meeting is attended by representatives of election commissions, the Central State Administration Office, the Constitutional Court, the ministries of internal and foreign affairs, the GONG election monitoring association, etc.
Speaking of problems in the current election system, the head of the DIP and Constitutional Court president, Branko Hrvatin, cited the short deadline for the organisation of elections, the flawed system of publishing candidacies in the press, and the excessive number of candidate lists. Hrvatin also underlined the need to improve the training of members of election commissions and observers and to define chairmanship of election commissions as a profession.
Speaking of the good sides of the election system, Hrvatin cited the fast processing of election results, activities of election monitors, and the high turnout.
UNDP Resident Representative Yuri Afanasiev said that elections were improving with time, which was evidence that democratic institutions were growing stronger. The UNDP will continue to assist in education related to the election process, he said.
The head of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Mission to Croatia, Jorge Fuentes, described the last election as a success, not only of the election winners, but of the DIP and the entire country.
DIP vice-president Jadranko Crnic advocated greater editorial freedom in the media coverage of election campaigns.