Ms. Natalia Iuras, the Director of the Centre for Continuous Electoral Training (CCET) under the Central Electoral Commission of the Republic of Moldova, the CoE Expert in the interview with Iravaban.net spoke about the election processes in Moldova and expressed the opinion about the Armenian reality.
Ms Iuras, what functions does your center carry out?
The Center conducts training for all participants of political processes in Moldova. Trainings are mainly related to the electoral legislation. As you know, on 30 November 2014, our country held parliamentary elections. Prior to the elections the center organized trainings for around 25000 observers, media representatives, representatives of the Central Election Commission and the electoral commissions. The center has 100 trainers. We have created an e-learning system for visually impaired people. In 2014 – 2015 Moldova chairs at the Association of European Election Officials, and in its framework has certain commitments related with trainings.
Which are the common election violations that occur in Moldova?
Money is a necessary element for democracies and parties to run smoothly but only as long as financing is transparent, properly accounted for, with full public disclosure and subjected to effective governmental and social oversight mechanisms. This guarantees citizens’ basic right to know the financial interests supporting candidates and the chance to consider them when casting their votes. Transparency and accountability also serve to monitor irregularities such as vote-buying and the flow of ill-gotten funds.
You are on a working visit in Yerevan. What are your impressions about the contacts with Armenian partners?
Unfortunately, I have to note that the same issues that are in Moldova occur in Armenia as well. I am very impressed with the professionalism of my Armenian colleagues. They have a very good understanding of the problems and try to overcome them. Armenian colleagues are very interested in the international experience. I am leaving Armenia with very good impressions and I wish to return in the status of a tourist.
What work needs to be carried out with the voters to raise their level of consciousness?
Here the civil society institutions have a lot of work to do. The civil society organizations, the media must constantly work with voters, inform them that the election bribes, illegal financing of the political parties and the election campaigns are really very dangerous both for the public and for the state as well.
Interview by Marat Atovmyan
Photo from Ms Iuras’ Facebook page