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Commonwealth to observe St Vincent and the Grenadines’ general elections

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A Commonwealth Election Observation Team will observe the St Vincent and the Grenadines general elections scheduled to be held on 9 December 2015.

The team was constituted by Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma, at the invitation of the Government of St Vincent and the Grenadines, {{more}}and will be led by Mr Paulo Cuinica, commissioner and spokesperson of the Mozambique Electoral Commission.

“In adopting the Commonwealth Charter, leaders of all our member states recognised the inalienable right of individuals to participate in democratic processes, in particular through free and fair elections,” said the secretary-general.

“I am therefore pleased to have been invited to deploy a Commonwealth Election Observation Team in St Vincent and the Grenadines. We would expect that in the light of their observations the team should be able to offer valuable, practical recommendations for continued strengthening of democratic processes.”

The Commonwealth Election Observation Team’s mandate is to observe and consider all aspects of the electoral process, with a view to assessing compliance with the standards for democratic elections to which St Vincent and the Grenadines has committed itself. Where appropriate, the team may also make recommendations for the future strengthening of the electoral framework.

Commonwealth observer teams act impartially and independently and conduct themselves according to the International Declaration of Principles for Election Observation, to which the Commonwealth is a signatory.

The two-member observer team will submit its report to the Commonwealth Secretary-General, who will in turn send it to the Government of St Vincent and the Grenadines, the Supervisor of Elections and political parties.

The observers will commence their work in country on December 5 and will remain in St Vincent and the Grenadines until December 13. A two-member Commonwealth Secretariat staff team will support the observer team.

In addition to team leader Cuinica, the other member of the observer team is Ms Myrtle Palacio, former chief elections officer and secretary-general, People’s United Party, Belize.

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