Procedures for the
closing of polls, counting of votes, and reporting the results
should be established in law and provide transparent safeguards
to protect the integrity of the process.
procedures for the counting of ballots should provide safeguards
that guarantee a transparent, prompt, and accurate count.
Only authorized staff should be involved in the closing
of polling stations and the counting of votes. All staff
should follow procedures specified in the law and regulations.
Candidate and political party agents and observers should
be allowed to observe all stages of the counting process.
results should be published at every stage of the vote tabulation
and be available for public inspection at the polling station/counting
center. The final election results should be declared after
the deadline for the submission of any challenges to the
results has passed.
Recognition of results
and political parties should have the right to challenge
the validity of election results. Procedures should be established
to allow challenges to be made within an appropriate timeframe
to an independent body. Challenges should be dealt with
impartially and decisions should be made without political
consideration. Successful candidates should be installed
in office without undue delay.