Colombia’s citizens have been encouraged to remain vigilant over possible voter fraud and asked to report any irregularities through a number of official channels as the final round of the country’s presidential elections begins.
|Colombia’s 2014 elections|
The primary site to report fraud and irregularities during the June 15 elections, pilasconelvoto.com, is administered by Colombia’s Electoral Observation Mission (MOE), an independent observer group established by the Organization of American States. The website allows citizens to inform the impartial MOE, the general public, and authorities regarding perceived electoral irregularities in their municipalities and states.
Marlon Bom, lawyer for MOE, told Colombia Reports that there are still some obstacles to keeping track of election fraud.
For example, said Bom, there are certain states whose citizens will not report fraud for fear of retribution from powerful politicians. Many areas of Colombia, he added, lack access to the internet, and some citizens may abstain from reporting for cultural reasons — such as isolated communities that do not feel part of mainstream Colombian society.
Voters can also file complaints directly to Colombian authorities at the Inspector General’s Office, a government administrative oversight body. Through a telephone hotline and the “Electoral complaints and allegations 2014″ link on the office’s front page, people can report irregularities and file complaints.
#SuVotoNoTienePrecio Quejas y denuncias electorales, a nivel nacional, en líneas gratuitas 018000941818 y 018000940808 de la Procuraduría.
— Procuraduría General (@PGN_COL) June 15, 2014
Additionally, irregularities can also be made through the Ministry of Interior’s URIEL website, uriel.mininterior.gov.co.
In order to prevent fraud, delegates and jurors will work alongside municipal human rights watchers to intervene at polling stations, if necessary. Electoral officials are tasked with verifying the documentation and schedule compliance of the election, conducted from 8AM to 4PM, and with aiding in the ballot counting process.
In the first round of presidential elections, which took place on May 25, there was a total of 801 reports of voter fraud or irregularities to MOE.
- Interview with Marlon Bom, lawyer at MOE (Colombia Reports)
- Pilas Con el Voto (MOE)