The preliminary data from the polling stations indicates that the voter turnout in Travnik was twice as small in comparison with the November 15, 2020 Local elections in BiH. One of the possible factors contributing to this smaller turnout in Travnik is a call for election boycott by some political subjects.
The Coalition “Pod lupom“ observed the 2020 Local elections in BiH, 2020 local elections in Mostar, re-run elections in Doboj and Srebrenica, and the snap mayoral elections in Travnik and Foča (FBiH) thus completing the election cycle for election of more than 3 200 representatives of government at the local level. The findings of the nonpartisan, civic election observation indicate there is an urgent need to improve the electoral process, which must take place in 2021 non-election year.
PRELIMINARY RESULTS OF MAYORAL RACES IN TRAVNIK AND FOČA (FBiH)
The preliminary results of the mayoral race in Travnik show the following:
- Kenan Dautović (SDA) – 54. 8 %
- Haris Kaniža (Naša travnička priča – NiP, SDP i NS / Our Travnik Story – People and Justice, Social Democratic Party and Our Party) – 45.2 %
A hitherto unseen situation has occurred in Foča (FBiH) where all mayoral candidates have an almost equal number of votes. The preliminary results of the mayoral race in Foča show the following:
- Mensud Borović (SDA) – 230 (24.6%)
- Mensad Arnaut (NBL-A-SDA Zajedno za Ustikolinu- Together for Ustikolina) – 241 (25.8%)
- Mujo Sofradžija (Independent) – 246 (26.3%)
- Mensura Karahodža (Independent) – 218 (23.3%)
What will determine a winner in the Foča mayoral race are the votes of those who voted through a mobile team (100 registered for voting via mobile team) and, to a smaller extent, the votes of those who voted by post (only 13 registered to vote by post).
The Coalition notes that voting through mobile teams is a process that is not monitored by electoral observers and the Coalition calls on the electoral authorities and observers in the municipal election commission to pay additional attention to determination of the actual results of the voting done via mobile teams and by post, considering the situation mentioned.
The registered turnout in the snap elections in Travnik is 27.5% (with a margin of error of +/- 3.55% on .95 percent confidence interval). The voter turnout in Foča (FBiH) is 56.7 % (with a margin of error of +/- 9.6 % on .95 percent confidence interval).
The preliminary data from the observed polling stations, and considering the margin of statistical error, shows that the voter turnout in Travnik is almost twice as small in relation to the November 15, 2020 Local elections in BiH.
DETERMINING RESULTS OF REPEATED ELECTIONS IN TRAVNIK AND FOČA (FBiH)
The Coalition “Pod lupom” observed determination of the election results in Travnik and Foča (FBiH). The determination of the elections results was in compliance with the law and regulations at all polling stations. At eight polling stations in Travnik it was registered that the yellow copy of the Aggregate Results Form was displayed, however, it was illegible.
CLOSING OF POLLING STATIONS
The closing of the polling stations was conducted in line with regulations. All polling stations closed between 7 and 7:15 p.m. At the polling stations that did not close on time, voters still queuing to vote at 7 p.m. were allowed to vote. All members of the polling station committees were present at the time of the polls’ closing at all polling stations.
The Coalition’s observers registered family voting at 45% of the polling stations in Travnik (up to 10 cases of this type of irregularity) and at two of the three polling stations in Foča (FBiH). At 41% of the polling stations in Travnik, the observers registered the cases when voters were turned away from the polls because they were not on the excerpt from the Central Voters’ Register (up to 10 cases of this type of irregularity), while this type of irregularity was registered at one of the three polling stations in Foča (FBiH).
One person assisted multiple persons with voting in a voting booth at 17 polling stations, whereof 16 in Travnik.
Voting without valid identification documents was registered at one polling station in Travnik (091A042).
No objections or complaints were made by observers or political subjects at any polling stations. The measures for preventing the spread of Covid-19 were applied and observed during the voting process.
OPENING AND ORGANIZATION OF POLLING STATIONS
The Coalition for Free and Fair Elections “Pod lupom” engaged on Election day more than hundred civic, nonpartisan observers who had unhindered access to all polling stations to which they were deployed in Travnik and Foča (FBiH).
The Coalition’s observers registered that members of the polling stations committees at ten polling stations in Travnik failed to fulfill their obligation to be present at the polling station at 6 a.m. This obligation was fulfilled at all polling stations in Foča (FBiH).
One polling station in Travnik was not arranged in accordance with the Instruction on operations of the election management bodies on the Election Day in the context of Covid-19 epidemic issued by the Central Election Commission of BiH.
A list with the names of the polling station committee members and names of represented political subjects has not been displayed at every fourth polling station in Travnik. In Foča (FBiH), the list including the names of political subjects has been displayed at all polling stations. The Coalition underlines the importance of displaying the list of members of the polling station committees along with the names of political subjects in contributing to electoral transparency and in preventing trading positions on the polling station committees.
The secrecy of the voting has been ensured at all polling stations in Travnik and Foča (FBiH), i.e., voting booths were arranged in a way that no one was able to see how a voter marked his/her ballot. The voting box was shown empty at all polling stations prior to the opening of the polls. Ballot papers were not hand-counted prior to opening of the polls at one polling station in Travnik (091A062).
68 polling stations in Travnik opened at exactly 7 a.m. while six (6) polling stations opened with a slight delay of up to 15 minutes, and one polling station opened with a delay longer than 15 minutes (091A070). All polling stations in Foča (FBiH) opened at exactly 7 a.m.
The Coalition “Pod Lupom” would like to extend a great thank you to nonpartisan, civic observers for observing the elections in Travnik and Foča (FBiH) and for their contribution in protecting the votes. The Coalition would like to thank the media outlets for their continuous coverage of the independent observation mission and for their timely information and professional reporting. The Coalition extends a thank you to the election authorities for their correct cooperation. We thank all other actors of the electoral process, and especially the citizens voters for their support and confidence.
The Pod Lupom Coalition worked together with 85 civil society organizations to organize observation of the electoral process in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Coalition’s efforts in the snap elections in Travnik and Foča (FBiH) were joined by two civil society organizations, the Center for Youth Education from Travnik and the Democratic Center “Nove nade” from Foča, that worked to engage and select nonpartisan observers. The Coalition Pod lupom wishes to thank them for their contribution to ensuring free and fair elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina.