The Center for Monitoring and Research (CeMI) calls on the State Election Commission (SEC) to ensure full transparency and protect the integrity of the electoral process by making their sessions open to the public during Election Day. Specifically, SEC members discussed at today's meeting the possibility of excluding the media from sessions during breaks or interruptions. Additionally, only accredited journalists, as well as accredited and authorized observers and candidate representatives, will be allowed to attend, while the sessions will be closed to all other interested parties.
We believe that such a decision is unacceptable, discriminatory, and contrary to democratic standards. We expected the SEC to demonstrate proactivity and full transparency, and, in the 21st century of modern technologies available to all, at least provide public broadcasts of all of their sessions without restrictions. This is common practice in neighboring countries and not to mention EU member states.
Previous electoral cycles, in which crucial decisions were made behind closed doors and accompanied by controversial practices, lead us to suspect that this decision was made deliberately to primarily protect the individual interests of political parties, while completely disregarding the public's interest in having full information and their right to know how key decisions are made within a commission whose primary goal should be to safeguard the public interest.