Voter Registration and Voter List audit/survey

SURVEY REPORT ON VOTES LIST, VOTERS REGISTRATION AND AUDIT OF VOTERS LIST 2011

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The Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia (COMFREL) serves to promote democracy and citizen participation in the spirit of building capacity for nationwide networking and cooperation with its member organizations and partners. Democracy is not just about elections, but free and fair elections are a necessary condition of democracy. COMFREL continues to devote great efforts to promoting democratic and genuine elections.

To contribute to the reform of the election framework, COMFREL and other election stakeholders decided to conduct a survey to uncover and understand irregularities with regard to voter registration, voter lists. At that point, no survey had been held to answer the key questions: How many voters did not go to register to vote? Why? What level of accuracy was there in the most recent voter registration?

In this survey, COMFREL is indebted to master trainers, observers and non-governmental organization (NGO) partners (Neutral and Impartial Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia (NICFEC), People Center for Development and Peace (PDP), Khmer Youth Association (KYA)who were actively engaged in implementing the survey during June 2011-January 2012 and made the survey possible.

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PRESS RELEASE COMFREL’s Observation Activities during Voter List Revision and Registration

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Phnom Penh, 14 September 2011- COMFREL is conducting observation activities related to political security and rights during the voter list revision and registration period for the 2012 commune council election.

The observation activities are being conducted in 24 provinces through the deployment of 342 observers. The observation activities include: voter education, surveying the voter list and registration audit, media monitoring and an additional focus on noting misuses of state resources.

SURVEY REPORT ON VOTERS LIST AND REGISTRATION

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FORWARD

The Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia (COMFREL) serves to promote democracy and citizen participation in the spirit of building capacity for nationwide networking and cooperation with its member organizations and partners. Democracy is not just about elections, but free and fair elections are a necessary condition of democracy. COMFREL continues to devote great efforts to promoting democratic and genuine elections.

Report on Voter Registration Audit (VRA) in Cambodia September 2007

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I. FORWARD

For most citizens, voter registration is yet one extra chore in the hustle and bustle of daily life. The trek to the Commune Council office to peer at a list on a wall or fill out a form is a mundane and bureaucratic exercise that is repeated annually by millions of Cambodians every September. Yet no component of an election is as important or essential to guaranteeing the rights of voters to cast their ballots and ensuring the fairness of the poll as the voter registration list. If citizenship springs from the theory of civic rights, then the voter registration list is the reality of enacting those rights.

3rd Preliminary Report On Results of Observation of Voter List Cleaning Process in 2007

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COMFREL has issued consecutive reports on its observation of the voter list cleaning process. The first report was issued on July 20, 2007, the second on August 1, 2007 and the third, regarding observation lasting from August 1 to 22, 2007, on August 23, 2007. A summary report has also been issued, covering July 12 to 31 in 165 communes/sangkats. COMFREL continued to deploy observers in 94 communes/sangkats to carry on with monitoring the process of complaints on the voter list cleaning and with verifying the quality of the list used to extract voter names (Form 1025). COMFREL’s observers are required to check all names of voters in one whole village as extracted into the cleared voter list (Form 1025) and go to the actual address (door-to-door) of voters whose names are removed to verify the related information.

Report On Observation of Listing of Voter Names to be Removed from Voter Lists

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COMFREL has been deploying its observers in 124 villages of 77 communes/ sangkats in order to monitor the complaints process on voter list cleaning and the quality of the list used to extract voter names (Form 1025). COMFREL observers were tasked with verifying the voter lists extracted into cleared voter list Form 1025 in villages and going to the actual address (door-to-door) of voters whose names were on the cleared list to verify information.

The Results of an Independent Audit of the Current Voter Registration List in Cambodia

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What is the Purpose of VRA?
- To provide an independent election observation report
- To verify the accuracy of voters list
- To evaluate the quality of voter registration process

Methodology
- 380 communes randomly selected – multistage stratified random sampling, with ± 3.5% of margin errors and 95% level of confidence.

Audit Recommends Priority on Unregistered Voters

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According to a reliable audit of the Cambodian Voters Registration List, 88.8% of eligible voters are registered. However, 11.2% are still unregistered which confirms the National Election Commission's (NEC) own estimation of 682,000 eligible voters who need to be registered. NEC intends to clean-up and update the voters list starting on September 15 and ending on October 20, 2007. "Based on our findings, registering eligible voters is far more important than the clean-up of the list. It should be NEC's absolute priority over the next month", recommended Dr. Hang Puthea, Executive Director of NICFEC. "If NEC deletes voters' names from the list, it would prudent to provide concrete evidence that the voter record is invalid."

Press Release On 2nd Preliminary Results of Observation of Voter List Cleaning Process in 2007

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The Committee for Free and Fair Elections in Cambodia (COMFREL) issued the 1st Preliminary Results of Observation of the Voter List Cleaning Process on July 20, 2007. The 2nd Preliminary Results, of observation lasting from July 20-31, 2007, show that some COMFREL-observed communes, where irregularities showed up in the first observation, were normalizing. Contrarily, new irregularities with the potential to impact the effectiveness of the voter list cleaning process and to lead to the loss of the right to vote showed up in some communes/sangkats, including those observed by COMFREL.

Joint Statement of Coalition of Civil Society on Remarks and Recommendations on the Voter List Cleaning Processes

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The Coalition of Civil Society is highly appreciative of the National Election Committee’s (NEC) efforts and will in clearing up the voter lists. Such effort and will may be valueless, however, if voter lists are not composed in a completely foolproof manner or if the trust of relevant stakeholders is not gained.