EU accuses CSE of being ‘opaque and arbitrary’

European mission says Nicaragua’s democracy is going backwards

(published Nov. 17, 12:40 p.m.) – The Supreme Electoral Council’s (CSE) poor handling of the Nov. 6 general elections got even worse after the polls closed, according to a scathing new release from the EU electoral observation mission.

The EU mission today released a statement accusing the CSE of being “opaque and arbitrary” during the final phase of the electoral process. The EU mission said the CSE’s job performance during the final transmission, counting and publishing of the final vote count was even less transparent and worrisome than their handling of election day.

The EU said the lack of access granted to their observation mission didn’t allow them to have adequate conditions to clearly verify and document the final vote-counting process. The EU also deplored the fact that the CSE failed to publish a detailed vote tally from all the voting stations, preventing the parties from auditing the elections.

The EU also questioned the CSE’s arbitrary decision to rush the final results on Nov. 11, when the electoral calendar calls for the parties to be notified on Nov. 22. The CSE’s rush job and obstruction of information prevented the opposition parties from preparing an adequate challenge to the results, the EU laments.

“The opacity and arbitrariness observed during the final phase of the 2011 elections, together with the problems of accrediting poll watchers and the denial of local election observers indicates a serious backwards slide in the quality of democracy in Nicaraguan elections,” the EU said.  

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  • http://onsite Homer

    Independent media with Amcham as one of the main advertisers (American chamber of commerce in Nicaragua)… This means the content of ND needs to be acceptable to them. I do hope Tim and ND to bring back equilibrium to their reporting. It’s dangerous to spread so much spin! Managua expats and Nica elites live in gated compounds and the internet news is flooded by people who have access to the Internet. The majority of Nicaraguans are poor and live a different reality. They do not have access to the internet. They had access to voting and they are happy with the result. The majority of Nicaraguans are satisfied with the FSLN programs. They are genuinely trying to be inclusive – working with the poor and big business. The FSNL message is a positive one and they also walk the talk. Giving chickens and cows to the poor, whom are farmers, is something we in the 1st world can not understand. Nobody is perfect and in every tree you can find a rotten apple. But instead of shouting fraud and potentially crashing Nicaragua into instability, the opposition should start working on how to make the electoral process more transparent and independent. They should also focus on building their political parties again. That’s progress. Nicaragua is a poor but yet beautiful and interesting country. Their people gentle and proud. I wish Nicaragua Nicaraguita in its broad diversity all the best.

  • GringoLoco

    Homer, put down that crack pipe!

    Whoretega rigged this election, starting with his decrees to keep his supporters in office after their terms expired (illegal according to the constitution). Then these same people issued a “judgment” that Whoretega could run again (and again and again and again) — a “judgment” taken without notifying the entire CSJ and using F$LN substitute “magistrates”.

    Hambre Cero is a great idea — put a chicken in every pot and they’ll vote for you! However, the reality on the ground is that very few poor have received any benefit (percentage-wise). And of those, 99% had to swear their loyalty to the F$LN to even be considered to receive the benefits.

    Note that after this so-called election, things can only get worse. Whoretega and La Chamuco will instiutionalize the CDC — oops, CPC, and if you aren’t in with “them”, don’t expect squat.

    Homer, you opine:

    “he opposition should start working on how to make the electoral process more transparent and independent. ”

    Um, how would that actually happen? Whoretega rules by decree. Rivas has completely rejected any and all criticism of the electoral process. The F$LN owns every institution of government. If the opposition dares to protest in the streets, Whoretega sends his delinquent thugs out to intimidate them. If they aren’t intimidated, they are attacked while the “police” just watch.

    Whoretega, Somoza, son la misma cosa…

    • buena cosa

      “Put down the crack pipe”, acabaste con homer. Seems like homer is not up to date on whats really happening in Nica.

  • http://onsite Homer

    GringoLoco, We can have a dialogue and share opinions but please write sensibly and think about how to choose your words. It’s more effective that way.

    Regarding running again which goes against the constitution: Uribe from Colombia did, Nobel peace winner Arias from Costa Rica did, New York Mayor Bloomberg did. So let’s not have double standards.

    Many US citizens want to update their constitution. Did you ever read it and realise that some of things are just out of this world especially in the 21st Century?

    Hambre Cero – The chickens, cows, family gardens do go into the cooking pot. More importantly is that they multiply as biological resource tend to do. Quite a few Nicaraguans I know now have 3 cows that provide milk to their family and so many chickens that they can now sell/trade their excess. Some have just simply sold their gift and are back at square one. It’s the decision of each individual to decide what to do with their gift. No need to swear loyalty. You just have to listen to them saying that it is thanks to FSNL that they receive bonos productivos. In the end everybody gets to vote in privacy on the persons they want.

    CPC / GPC – Decentralised decision making is not structurally bad. I do agree that in its current state it is to politically attached to the FSNL. The opposition prefers all decision making to be done from a central location in Managua. This system can also become a power vacuum and corrupt. Nothing is perfect. But we got to keep on progressing and learn from mistakes. Any system should stay flexible. There are solutions but that’s in the hands of Nicaraguans.

    Health and happiness.

    • buena cosa

      Mr. Homer, you and the F$LN can fool the poor campesinos but not this jincho, lets be realistic. If you are not “red and black” you dont get squat. The CPC knows every ones party preference, this is one of the duties they are paid for. If they even suspect you oppose the Sandinistas and dont have your “carnet”(militant ID card) you get nothing. So stop trying to come across like the salvation of the poor while you are just using these innocent people for their vote. The people that do receive the gifts are usually too poor or dont have the land to support these animals. So if they dont sell or eat them right away they are put out to free range. Then they get stolen, shot or macheted by the neighbor for causing them crop damage.
      Paz y amor

  • Maria

    “Give a man a fish and you’ll feed him for one day, teach him to fish and you’ll feed him for a lifetime” – Quality education and a just tax policy are key factors in providing a sustainable social system, this government is not promoting either of the two. So, what will happen to Nicaragua and all of the poor when Venezuela’s tit runs out of milk (or Chavez dies) and we are left with “la deuda”, unemployment, uneducated and untrained people? Who will save us then? Are we destined to be a leech country with Danny Forever?