Persons in charge of the presentations:
Julio César Castaños, President of the Central Electoral Board of the Dominican Republic
Salvador Romero, President of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Bolivia
Wilfredo Penco, Vice President of the Electoral Court of Uruguay
Diana Atamaint, President of the National Electoral Council of Ecuador
Maria Elena Wapenka, Minister of the Superior Court of Electoral Justice of Paraguay
Francisco Guerrero, Secretary for the Strengthening of Democracy
Gerardo de Icaza, Director of the Department for Electoral Cooperation and Observation
Brenda Santamaría, Section Chief, Department for Electoral Cooperation and Observation
States must guarantee the right to life and health. Furthermore, they are responsible for protecting democratic values and guaranteeing respect for the constitutional order established in each country.
Electoral processes, in particular the pre-electoral stage and on election day, involve mass meetings or community events, for example: campaign activities, training of table members, preparation of electoral material, attendance of citizens at their polling station. voting, among others. In light of the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO) to avoid the agglomeration of people, the electoral authorities are faced with the challenge of carrying out electoral processes while safeguarding the health of citizens and of the electoral servers.
On the other hand, measures of social distancing and current context could affect the principle of transparency, which is linked to the fundamental right of citizens to seek, receive and impart information, as well as the right to participate in government and public affairs. .
In the same way, a health crisis of this type requires the authorities to take new measures to guarantee inclusive elections, which offer equal opportunities so that all citizens with the right to vote and to be elected can participate.
Finally, it is important to bear in mind that the global health crisis generated by the spread of COVID-19 generated a disinformation crisis, a phenomenon that will probably extend to electoral processes.
Taking into account the above, it is proposed that the discussion revolve around the following questions:
- What measures have you considered to mitigate the spread of the virus during the pre-electoral stage and on Election Day, and protect both the electoral servants and the citizens?
- What regulatory and political challenges have you encountered implementing changes to guarantee the rights to life and health of citizens? How have you overcome these challenges?
- What procedures should be put in place to guarantee that the information related to all the stages of the electoral cycle, including the counting on the day of the election, is available and accessible to the public?
- What actions have you considered to guarantee the participation of vulnerable groups in the electoral process?
- What initiatives have been proposed to combat false news or disinformation in the current context?