New Forces boycott Ivorian electoral commission

Abidjan- Cote d'Ivoire (PANA) -- The Ivorian New Forces (ex-rebels) indicated Thursday that they would not appoint any representative to the Independent Electoral Commission (CEI) for the tie being because the procedure used in its creation violated the Linas-Marcoussis agreement signed in January 2003.
In a letter sent to the minister of regional administration obtained here Thursday, the secretary-general of the New Forces, Gullaume Soro, said his movement's participation in the commission was subject to amendments on the law that created it, which was adopted on 14 December 2004.
Meanwhile, Soro also said that the decision made by President Laurent Gbagbo on 15 July 2005 "contained serious violations of the foundation of democracy.
" "Among other things, this include the failure to take into account the constituents' power to remove and replace their representatives, lack of representation of all signatory parties to the agreements in local commissions in accordance with articles 17, 18 and 19," the NF secretary general stressed.
Soro's letter also said that the powers given to the National Statistical Institute (INS) to the detriment of the CEI could weaken the commission by diluting its prerogatives to guarantee the preparation and organisation of fair, just and transparent elections in Cote d'Ivoire.
According to the NF secretary general, point 6 of the Pretoria declaration signed 29 June by the main Ivorian politicians bore in mind the good faith of the political leaders by asserting the primary role of the CEI.
The Pretoria declaration affirmed the CEI was the "only institution charged with the electoral process and that the INS "must report to it about all election-related matters.
" Guillaume Soro was referring to several decrees signed by the Ivorian president on 15 July at the request of President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa, the African Union.
On that day, the Ivorian President, Laurent Gbagbo, signed several decrees by virtue of powers conferred upon him under article 48 of the Ivorian constitution.

28 july 2005 22:01:00

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