Friday, May 4, 2018

Iraq’s Parties Complain About New Electronic Voting Machines


In May Iraq’s Election Commission will be using new electronic machines to record people’s votes and collate the results. Citizens will use a stamp to make their selection, and then the results will be sent electronically to the Commission. The devices were introduced to increase the speed of determining the totals and to avoid fraud.

Many parties and lists are upset with the change. Some have claimed that the results could be manipulated or that foreign countries could use satellites to intercept and change the information being transmitted to the Election Commission. State of Law and the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq for instance, have both voiced concerns. Every campaign year there are charges of corruption. Buying voting cards, stuffing ballot boxes, bribing voters, etc. have all been mentioned in the past, and this year as well. That was a major reason why the new machines are being used. Rather than worrying about these issues, the major lists are probably upset that they will not be able to use those techniques to help ensure their victories.

SOURCES

Baghdad Post, “IHEC announces use of new electronic voting system,” 4/22/18

Al Mada, “Pressure on the Election Commission to adopt a manual count in sorting results,” 5/1/18

Sattar, Omar, “Electronic vote counting sparks controversy ahead of Iraqi polls,” Al Monitor, 4/18/18

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