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Central Electoral Commission

of the Republic of Moldova

Parliamentary elections in 35 days

Historical background

COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

in the 15 years of work 1997-2012

 

            Following its independence, the electoral system from the Republic of Moldova has undergone in-depth reforms, aiming at laying the foundation for the rule of law. Initially, the democratisation process had a troublesome development, but soon these actions started to be supported in a constitutional way. Pursuing the goal of applying the constitutional provisions and prior to scheduled parliamentary elections, by the Decision of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Socialist Republic of Moldova No. 3625-XI from 24 November 1989, there has been established the Central Electoral Commission aiming at carrying out the election of the deputies of the people. This Central Electoral Commission, having elected Mr. Vladimir Chictenco as its president, was in charge with conducting the parliamentary elections since 1990 and presidential elections since December 1991.

            The Parliament, elected for five years, was self-dissolved early (1990-1994) and there was established a new Central Electoral Commission for the early elections to the Parliament that were set for 27 February 1994During this period the CEC had added to its direct competences the competences of the district electoral commissions (now - councils) and the establishment of polling station electoral commissions (now - bureaus).

 

 

COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

established for the early parliamentary elections of 27 February 1994

 

            The Central Electoral Commission created for the early elections of 1994 had in its composition 7 judges of the Supreme Court and 17 representatives of the parties, social-political organisations and electoral blocs participating in the elections.

            The president of the Commission was Mr. Nicolae Timofti, being elected by secret voting from the nominated judges. And in line with the then norms, within 3 days from its establishment, the CEC elected the vice-president and the secretary from its members.

            The term of this Central Electoral Commission expired following the validation of mandates of the deputies and the establishment of the Parliament; the term of the district electoral commissions expired following the declaration of legality of the elections from the respective electoral divisions by the Constitutional Court. The Constitution of the Republic of Moldova, adopted on 29 July 1994, set the principles and democratic values of governance and instituted the principle of checks and balances, thus creating the basis for sustainable democratic development.

 

 

COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

established for the local general elections of 16 April 1995

 

In line with the Law No. 308 from 7 December 1994, on 16 April 1995 there were conducted the first local elections since the proclamation of independence. Due to this voting there was promoted political pluralism at the local level, by the expression of the vote on the basis of the party lists in the electoral districts.

In order to organise and conduct the elections, there was established a Central Electoral Commission consisting of 7 judges of the Supreme Court and 4 representatives of the Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic of Moldova. As its President, the CEC elected Mr. Vasile Pascari, nominated by the Supreme Court.

While conducting these elections, the CEC drafted a number of guidelines and regulations, which improved the details of the electoral procedures. The electoral campaign was massively covered by media and also by International organisations, whose interest in elections in the Republic of Moldova had increased.

 

 

COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

established for the presidential elections of 17 November 1996

 

            On 17 November 1996 presidential elections took place in the Republic of Moldova, under the Law on the elections for the position of president of the Republic of Moldova, adopted on 16 May 1996. In order to organise and conduct presidential elections, by Parliament’s Decision No. 924-XII from 12 July 1996, there was confirmed a new composition of the Central Electoral Commission, whose president was Mr. Petru Railean, nominated by the Plenum of the Supreme Court of Justice.

The mandate of the Central Electoral Commission expired at the same time as the taking of the oath by the elected candidate for the position of the President of the Republic of Moldova. If needed, the mandate of the Central Electoral Commission could have been prolonged by a Parliamentary decision. In line with article 9 of the above mentioned law, the Central Electoral Commission was to be established by the Parliament 90 days at the latest prior to the elections day, in the following composition:

  • 3 judges of the Supreme Court of Justice;
  • 3 prosecutors of the Prosecutor’s General Office;
  • 3 representatives of the Superior Council of the Magistrature;
  • By 1 representative with the right to express a consultative vote on behalf of each candidate registered for the position of President for the Republic of Moldova.

 

The Central Electoral Commission was assisted by a staff confirmed by the Government.

 

 

COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

1997-2003

 

            The Electoral Code adopted on 21 November 1997, consolidated all the legislative acts referring to presidential, parliamentary and local elections, and provided for common electoral procedures. This Electoral Code established the Central Electoral Commission as a state body with a permanent status, in order to organise and conduct elections. The establishment of the Commission was dictated by the necessity of having a competent and specialized body in the field of elections. The Commission is the highest electoral hierarchical body and the subordinate electoral bodies are established by it for each election and referendum.

            Following its adoption, the Electoral Code has seen numerous changes in order to adjust its norms to international standards in the field, as well as to improve electoral procedures. The section on presidential elections has now been excluded from the Electoral Code, as they are currently conducted within the Parliament on the basis of a special law.

The continuous activity of the Central Electoral Commission has enabled the improvement of the quality and efficiency in carrying out the electoral process. The Commission consists of 9 members with deliberative right to vote, with an initial mandate of 6 years under the first version of the code, subsequently reduced to 5 years (the Law No.176/2005).

The composition of the permanent Central Electoral Commission was confirmed by Parliament’s Decision No. 1405 from 16 December 1997. Afterwards, the Commission in its new composition, aiming at ensuring the good organisation in conducting elections, drafted CEC’s Regulations, which is the basis for its work, as well as other regulations and templates of electoral documents. Mr. Dumitru Nidelcu was elected as the President of the Commission, fulfilling the duties of this position for 6 years. Throughout its mandate, the Commission organised and conducted the parliamentary elections on 22 March 1998, local general elections, the consultative republican referendum on 23 May 1999, early parliamentary elections on 25 February 2001, and general local elections on 25 May 2003.

 

COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

2003-2005

 

As the 6 year mandate of the first permanent Commission expired, the Parliament confirmed a new composition of the Central Electoral Commission by Decision No. 516 from 18 December 2003. Within the same Decision, there was confirmed as President Mr. Eugeniu Clim, nominated by the President of the Republic of Moldova. Subsequently, following his resignation, the Decision was modified so that there was confirmed as President Mr. Petru Railean, being similarly nominated by the President of the Republic of Moldova. In December 2004, by Parliamentary Decision, there was established the date of 6 March 2005 for parliamentary elections, this being the fourth competitive election of the Parliament since the proclamation of independence.  The mandate of the respective Commission was terminated by Parliamentary Decision No. 290-XVI of 11 November 2005, which confirmed a new modality of appointing members and a new composition. 

 

COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

2005-2011

          By Parliamentary Decision No. 290/2005, the Central Electoral Commission was to be established under a new formula: although it had the same number of 9 members with deliberative right of voting, one member was to be nominated by the President of the Republic of Moldova, one member by the Government and 7 members by the Parliament, including 5 members by opposition parties, proportionally with the number of mandates they possessed. The members convened in the first session elected as President Mr. Eugeniu Ştirbu, nominated by the Parliament. Within the Parliament, he had been nominated by the Democratic Party, which was representing the opposition at that time, the Communist Party forming the majority fraction. This Commission worked without there being modified its composition for the length of its full mandate of 5 years.

          In this composition, the Commission started its work with organising the elections of the mayor of Chişinău municipality, scheduled for 27 November 2005. The municipality faced the phenomena of massive absenteeism for this time in this case. Due to the low voter’s turnout, the general mayor could not be elected even from the fourth attempt. During its mandate of 5 years, the Commission organised and conducted general on 3 June 2007, parliamentary elections on 5 April 2009, early parliamentary elections on 29 July 2009, a consultative republican referendum on 5 September 2010, and early parliamentary elections on 28 November 2010.

 

 

CURRENT COMPOSITION OF THE CENTRAL ELECTORAL COMMISSION

confirmed on 11 February 2011

 

There is now an amended procedure for establishing the Central Electoral Commission, on the basis of the Law No. 119 from 18 June 2010 which modified and amended the Electoral Code No. 1381-XIII from 21 November 1997. Thus, currently Central Electoral Commission similarly consists of 9 members, although a member is nominated by the President of the Republic of Moldova and the other 8 members by the Parliament, at the same time respecting the proportional representation of the majority and of the opposition in the Parliament. The composition of the Commission is confirmed by Parliamentary Decision, with the majority voting of the elected deputies. The President, Vice-President and Secretary of the Central Electoral Commission are elected by majority voting of the total number of its members.

A meeting to elect the CEC leadership took place on 15 February 2011. Mr. Iurie Ciocan was elected as the President of the Commission, Mr. Ştefan Urîtu as Vice-President and Mr. Andrei Volentir as its Secretary. The first national elections – general local elections were organized by the Central Electoral Commission in this composition on 5 June 2011, subsequently the Commission has conducted a series of new elections in a number of localities.