English | Dzongkha Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Election disputes decreasing: Election Commission

Yeshi Gyaltshen, Thimphu
Jan 22, 2018

With third parliamentary elections around the corner, election related disputes are highly likely to happen. But, election officials said the number of such disputes has been declining over time.

The statement was remarked by the Election Commissioner, Deki Pema, at the two-day Election Dispute Settlement Workshop for judiciary in Thimphu today.  The Election Commissioner said, the declining trend is attributed to improved awareness among the people. “Previously we used have anonymous lodging of disputes or cases but now we do not do that, we demand proper address. But that being said, if we get reports and is of serious concern, then the dispute settlement body takes it up,” added the Election Commissioner.

The first parliamentary elections in 2008 saw over 100 dispute cases. In 2011, there were 77 cases during the Local Government elections. The 2013 parliamentary elections saw 59 disputes. In 2016, the thromde and LG elections had 20 disputes related cases.

During the workshop, judicial officials will discuss on election policies, practices, election offences, and penalties. The Chief Justice of Supreme Court, Tshering Wangchuk underlined that the judiciary has its own responsibility and the training will be instrumental in carrying out their duties efficiently. “Our institution is an apolitical one, and therefore we should never take part in politics. But to educate the people and to take part in the elections is very important.”

The Chief Justice added, the judiciary has gain a lot of experience from the past two parliamentary elections. “Reform is never static, it is a continuous process. From our past experience, we have to tackle the challenges head on and bring new ideas and solutions, and even alter laws if necessary.”

Over 60 justices and registrars from across the country are attending the workshop in the capital that ends tomorrow.



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