Election Observation Report (Counting Process) NA-4 (Peshawar-IV)

 

Thursday (October 26, 2017)

This report is issued by Coalition for Elections and Democracy (CED) for observing the counting process at NA-4 (Peshawar IV). The total number of registered voters in the constituency was 397,904 including 235,164 male voters and 162,740 female voters; while the total number of polling stations set up in the constituency was 269 with 837 polling booths, 492 for male voters and 345 for female voters. This report presents the observation of the counting process of polling in the constituency.

The official closing time of the polling is 5pm. The CED teams made sure to enter the sampled polling stations before the closure of voting process. However at the Polling Station #235 Government Higher Secondary School Chamkani security official didn’t allow the team to enter the polling station and observe the counting process however presiding officer handed over copy of form XIV after counting closed at 6:20 pm.

While entering the polling stations for observation of counting process the observers reported about the situation outside the polling stations. They noted that situation was calm outside the polling stations except for isolated incidents of heated situation at PS #6 and 57. No large crowds of voters were waiting outside of the polling station to vote.

The observers reported that 78% of the sampled polling stations closed on time, however the remaining polling station were closed between 1-10 minutes delay due to unrest in those polling stations. The polling staff started the closing process immediately and the counting started within 10 minutes of the closing at average. The voters waiting to vote inside the polling station were allowed to vote.

The observers reported a number of discrepancies in closing process. Starting from counting the number of issued ballot papers to compilation of the results. At 11 % of the sampled polling stations the observers reported that the staff did not count the number of issued ballot papers while closing the polling. At same percent of sample polling stations the staff did not record the number of issued ballot papers in ECP forms at the time of counting. While staff at 11% polling stations did not count and record the number of un-used ballot papers immediately after start of closing process, pending it till final filling of forms towards the end of the counting process. Teams of observers reported at 3 polling stations seal of the ballot box was not properly intact when it was brought to table for counting process. Observers noted at 22% polling stations that the polling staff did not cross check the number of ballots cast against the number of signatures on the counterfoil I.e. issued ballot papers. While during the counting process at one polling station #57 the presiding officer did not show the ballot papers while declaring them invalid.

The observers reported that 38% of the presiding officers of sampled polling stations did not paste the result outside the polling station for the public. At 100% sampled polling stations the presiding officers gave copies of the result (form XIV) to the poling agents.

The observers noted that during counting process a formal complaint was lodged at polling station #57. However staff at polling station didn’t handled the complaint according to the procedures and there was unrest inside the polling station.

The polling staff cooperated with the CED observers during the counting process. All the observers were allowed to sit in the counting room without any restriction except for one polling station #235. The presiding officers of all the sampled polling stations answered all questions related to counting process and shared details of the vote count with observers.

About CED: CED is a civil society coalition for voter education, election observation and strengthening democratic institutions. Its secretariat is based at CPDI

Coalition for Election and Democracy
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