Media Center

Press Release

OAS Electoral Observation Mission Congratulates Peru on a Peaceful and Democratic Electoral Day

  June 7, 2021

The Electoral Observation Mission (EOM) of the Organization of American States (OAS) in Peru congratulates the Peruvian people for having gone to the polls yesterday, Sunday, June 6, to express their will in a peaceful and democratic manner and recognizes the authorities for the organization of a highly complex electoral process, marked by the pandemic and political polarization.

On election day, the Mission was deployed in 18 provinces of the national territory and 5 cities abroad, which allowed comprehensive monitoring of different aspects of the electoral process and observation the elections from the opening of the voting centers to the closing and the counting of the votes. As in the April elections, the Mission had quantitative data on the opening, the development of the voting and the counting of votes at the polls.

The data collected by the Mission confirm the narrowness of the results that were presented both by the quick counts and by the official data that the National Office of Electoral Processes (ONPE) shows today. Although citizens have already cast their vote, the electoral process continues. It should be remembered that there are still minutes pending to process both in terms of the national vote and the vote abroad, as well as the observed minutes that will be settled in the special electoral juries.

The Mission recognizes the candidates for their calls for calm and hopes that this democratic attitude will continue to prevail and that eventual disagreements will be resolved through the legal channels available to them. Likewise, it makes a respectful call to citizens and political actors to wait patiently and calmly for the official results to be released by the authorities, and to conduct themselves responsibly and democratically at this stage of the process. Their conduct in these crucial hours will be decisive in maintaining a climate of tranquility and social peace in the country.

The Mission regrets the attacks received by representatives of the media in the exercise of their functions and calls for respect for journalistic work and the integrity of those who exercise it.

Headed by the former Foreign Minister of Paraguay, Rubén Ramírez Lezcano, the Mission is made up of 40 observers and specialists from 16 nationalities who arrived in the country in a staggered manner as of May 30. During their stay in the national territory, the members of the Mission held meetings with electoral and government authorities, both candidates in contention, academics, representatives of civil society organizations and other relevant actors.

On election day, the Mission compiled information on the conduct of voting in 191 precincts and 861 polling stations. Its members confirmed the total or partial implementation of a large part of the recommendations issued by the OAS Mission in its preliminary report of the first round, among which those aimed at strengthening the training of officials at different levels, streamlining the process of reception and processing of the minutes in the Decentralized Offices of Electoral Processes (ODPE), and the optimization of voting spaces, with a significant improvement in terms of signage and lighting. In this sense, the Mission values the openness of the electoral authorities and their ongoing willingness to improve the electoral processes.

The members of the Mission observed that the installation of the voting centers went smoothly and without major problems. Toward noon, the Mission learned of the installation of 100% of the centers. The Mission welcomes the fact that more than half of the people who served as delegates of the political organizations were women, as well as the participation of indigenous and Afro-Peruvians in this role.

The Mission verified that the polling stations had all the essential electoral materials, as well as that both the polling station officials and the voters were wearing personal protective equipment and other biosafety items. Likewise, the OAS Mission was able to verify that, in general terms, voting spaces were adequate, that they had appropriate signage that facilitated the voting process and the maintenance of social distance. The presence of the security forces was also observed and that the right to secret ballot was guaranteed, as well as that practically all the polling stations gave preference to older adults, pregnant women and people with disabilities.

The Mission learned of isolated incidents, as well as the indication that IDs marked in favor of one of the political forces had been found. In this sense, the Mission welcomes the immediate intervention of the electoral authorities, who are responsible for following up and clarifying what happened.

As planned, the voting centers were closed at 7 pm. The Mission verified that voters who remained in line were allowed to vote, and that the vast majority of the polling stations had representatives of the two political organizations in contention, that they received a copy of the tally sheet, and that the vote count it was carried out in accordance with established procedures. The withdrawal of the official records was carried out as planned and the chain of custody was respected. The Mission observed that this worked more quickly compared to the first round.

On election night, citizens learned about voting trends primarily from an exit poll and a quick count conducted by a private company.

The ONPE released the first results at 11:30 pm, when 42% of the records were processed. It should be noted that, as of the arrival of the records to the ODPE and their processing, there were no cuts in the flow of information, which was made publicly and transparently through the ONPE portal, which allowed citizens follow the count and consult information continuously. By 1:30 pm the next day, the advance was already over 94%.

The Mission congratulates the electoral authorities for the use of this type of mechanism that contributes to the transparency of electoral processes and gives certainty to citizens.

The OAS Electoral Observation Mission will continue to monitor the process until its conclusion and will present a preliminary report in the coming days.

The OAS Mission thanks the Government, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the electoral authorities and the Peruvian people for the facilities granted to carry out their work, as well as the financial contributions of Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, South Korea, Spain, The United States, France, Ghana, Guatemala, Italy, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Switzerland, which made the Mission possible.

Reference: E-060/21