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Electoral Observation Mission to the Elections in Mexico Presents Report Highlighting the Robust Legal Framework in Parity and Gender Equality

  November 20, 2018

The Electoral Observation Mission of the Organization of American States that accompanied the Mexican federal and local elections on July 1 today presented to the Permanent Council the final report with a series of recommendations focused on the areas of political participation and communication, campaign financing, electoral violence, voting abroad and electoral justice.

The report, presented by the Chief of Mission and former President of the Dominican Republic, Leonel Fernández, highlights that in terms of parity and gender equality "Mexico has a defined a robust legal framework, that has been effectively accompanied by the action of the different electoral institutions." Moreover, the Chief of Mission highlighted the high representation of women in Congress, one of the largest in the region. "After the elections, women occupy 48.2% of the seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 49.22% in the Senate," said the Chief of the EOM.

With regard to the voting, the report states that "the day of the election was peaceful in most states, where federal and local authorities helped to ensure a normal environment." However, it notes that in some states the electoral violence recorded during the campaign persisted "with focused incidents, including theft and destruction of ballots, shootouts and fights in the vicinity of polling stations, as well as threats to party representatives and officials."

Electoral violence is raised in the report as a point of concern. "The Mission strongly condemns violence in the framework of the electoral process and expects the authorities to join forces to ensure that these acts are clarified and those responsible for them are punished," the document notes. To combat this problem, the report suggests the implementation of a "multiple approach that reduces the incentives of criminal activity and in turn improves the capabilities of state security forces."

The report also includes a series of recommendations among which are: strengthening protection mechanisms for different political actors and representatives of civil society in the electoral period and the need to develop regulations at the federal level on gender based political violence "that addresses the problem from an integral perspective to ensure its prevention, attention, sanction and eradication." The Mission also urges the promotion of greater inclusion of Afro-descendant populations, and to carry out reviews to electoral legislation, so as not to generate incentives for excessive litigation."

At the end of the presentation, the Permanent Representative of Mexico to the OAS, Jorge Lomónaco, expressed his appreciation for the report and the work carried out by the OAS General Secretariat in the area of promotion and defense of democracy. "This has been a historic year in terms of electoral observation for the OAS and this includes observation in Mexico," said Ambassador Lomónaco.

For her part, the Magistrate President of the Superior Chamber of the Electoral Tribunal of the Judicial Power of the Federation (TEPJF) of Mexico, Janine M. Otálora Malassis, explained that for the TEPJF "this is a propitious moment to draw conclusions on the development of the 2018 electoral process, where we have to analyze the norms, actions and behavior of political actors and our decisions in the field of electoral justice." Otálora Malassis emphasized that electoral observation "is fundamental for the functioning of our democracy, the electoral system and the authorities themselves."

Reference: E-071/18