Electoral Priorities

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Six electoral priority areas for Nicaragua to elect with confidence, independence and transparency

(Electoral Reform)

  1. Re-establishing trust in the electoral system.
  2. Re-establishing electoral transparency and guarantees.
  3. Opening up broad, comprehensive, plural and equitable electoral competition.
  4. Mechanisms for citizens’ participation.
  5. Electoral and normative reform of the electoral branch.
  6. New legal configuration of elected posts.

Naming of CSE magistrates.

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  • Civil society can present candidates.
  • Establishment of a procedure to guarantee the suitability of the candidates.

Eliminating party influence over the electoral and administrative structures.

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  • Naming of the CEDs, CERs and CEMs: Open call for candidates with criteria established in the Electoral Law.
  • Proposed candidates filtered based on the requirements established in the regulations, with the naming done using the random method.

Naming of the vote reception boards (JRVs) and electoral police.

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  • Random selection mechanism using the corresponding district’s electoral roll.

Other electoral authorities.

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  • Naming of the electoral prosecutor and electoral ombudsperson using the same criteria as for the electoral magistrates.

Electoral Observation.

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  • Obligatory national and international observation without exclusion of any type established in the Electoral Law.

Dissemination of Results.

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  • National-level dissemination of results on the CSE website detailed by JRV.
  • Dissemination of partial provisional results within 24 hours.
  • Publication of all tally sheets on the CSE website.
  • Transmission of results from each JRV to the National Computing Center.

Ballot papers.

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  • Separate ballot papers for each type of election (President, departmental representatives, PARLACEN representatives, mayors and councilmen/women).

Results protocols.

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  • Replace the copy with a “duplicate”, published on the CSE website.

Monitoring by the political parties.

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  • Establish times and periods for accrediting monitors in each electoral process.
  • Guarantee accreditation in the JRVs and include a list of accredited monitors in the electoral packet.

Appeals.

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  • Include an ENTIRE ORDERED HEADING on the subject of appeals in the Electoral Law.

Electoral Roll.

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  • Eliminate the “passive” roll, keeping the “active” one.
  • Cleanse, update and audit the electoral roll.
  • Reincorporate into the Electoral Law the possibility for citizens that do not appear on their JRV’s electoral roll to vote as long as they can demonstrate that they live in the corresponding electoral district.

Electoral Calendar.

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  • Detail the activities of the electoral process.
  • Strengthen the consultation and observation of the political parties.
  • The consultation will be binding when the political parties/ popular subscription associations unanimously agree on a proposal.

Relaxing the requirements for new political forces.

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  • Eliminate the concept of territoriality for the establishment of political parties.

Requirements for presenting candidates.

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  • Just by obtaining and still having a valid legal status.
  • Re-establish the legal status of suspended parties and those whose status was unjustly cancelled.

Creation of the Electoral Consultative Council.

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  • The Electoral Consultative Council as a permanent body for consultation between the CSE and the political parties and alliances.
  • Must include a representative of the political parties and of the political alliances.

Implementation of voting abroad.

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  • Obligatory implementation and application in the next elections.

Relaxing the rules for Electoral Alliances.

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  • They can choose which position to occupy on the ballot paper and select their name, flag and legal representative.

Prohibition of defection.

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  • Eliminate from the Political Constitution.

Other forms of election.

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  • Re-establish popular subscription at the municipal and Caribbean Coast region level.

Re-election.

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  • NON-REELECTION for the posts of President and Vice President.

Inhibition of candidacies.

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  • Prohibit the spouse of the outgoing President from standing for that post.
  • Guarantee the right of released political prisoners and people exiled since the crisis of 2018 to stand for elected office.

Establish the percentage for winning the presidency.

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  • 50% + 1 and re-establish the second round.

Eliminate the legislative seats for the outgoing President and the second-placed presidential candidate.

Popular Consultation Mechanism.

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  • Regulate the procedure for plebiscites and referendums.
  • Reincorporate the process of massive citizens’ verification OBLIGATORILY.
  • Implement voter education, promotion and information processes.

Process for issuing voter ID cards.

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  • Remove party influence from the voter identification card issuing process and establish punishments in the PENAL CODE for public officials, individuals and members of political parties that commit irregularities in that process.

Jurisdictional oversight of CSE decisions (developed in the Constitutional Reforms).

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  • Eliminate the provision stipulating that there is no appeal against CSE decisions or rulings.
  • Creation of a Specialized Electoral Justice Tribunal to hear and administratively resolve appeals against CSE decisions. The Tribunal’s members will be proposed and named following the same criteria defined for electoral magistrates.

Establish the Civil Registry as an autonomous entity responsible for issuing voter ID cards.

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  • Directly responsible for issuing voter identification cards in coordination with the country’s mayor’s offices.
  • Separate the issuing of voter ID cards from electoral administration.

Distribution of electoral remainders for elected posts (National Assembly representatives, municipal and regional council members).

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  • The distribution of electoral remainders must be done from largest to smallest among those political parties that have not obtained seats by means of the electoral quotient.

Incorporate the idea of mid-term recall referendums for the posts of President and Vice President (mentioned in the Constitutional Reforms).

Produce a Political Parties Law.