Russia: Observers to monitor nationwide voting on constitutional amendments

Public observers will be monitoring all forms of the upcoming nationwide vote on amendments to the Russian Constitution, Chairperson of the Central Election Commission (CEC) Ella Pamfilova told a session of the commission looking into a new voting procedure.

Voters at the 2018 Russian Presidential Election

“Observers must monitor all forms of the ballot” Pamfilova said, explaining that the presence of observers will be mandatory also for early voting and voting at home.

The amendments would expand the powers of the State Duma and the Federation Council (upper house), prohibit high-ranking officials from holding residency status overseas, limit the number of presidential terms and guarantee the supremacy of the Constitution over international treaties throughout Russia’s legal space.

In addition, the document stipulates strengthening the social obligations of the state and a nationwide vote on the amendments. The amendments to the Constitution require that the Russian head of state can only serve two terms, however, one of the amendments proposes that the current president can be re-elected if the new version of the Constitution comes into force.

The vote was initially set to take place on 22 April. However, Vladimir Putin chose to postpone it due to the situation with the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Russia. During a working session on Monday, Putin approved 1 July 2020 as the new date for the vote.

Article source:

Fellow GNDEM members GOLOS have observed previous Russian elections and frequently report on electoral news in Russia.

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