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Polish opposition group appoints 50,000 monitors for October elections

04.09.2023 07:00
Poland’s main opposition grouping, the centrist Civic Coalition (KO), has said it will have monitors in every constituency to help ensure that the parliamentary elections on October 15 are transparent.
Barbara Nowacka
Barbara NowackaPAP/Jakub Kaczmarczyk

The group's leaders announced the move at a news conference in the western city of Poznań on Sunday, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

It coincided with the annual Women’s Congress, which was held in the Polish city at the weekend.

Lawmaker Barbara Nowacka told reporters: “More than 50,000 people have volunteered to monitor the elections. This means there will be at least one person monitoring the elections on behalf of the Civic Coalition in every constituency.”

She added that the elections “must be monitored” because the ruling conservatives “are capable of committing every act of dishonesty” to remain in power.

Nowacka argued that "the Law and Justice (PiS) party-led government tramples on women’s rights, destroys Polish solidarity, destroys Polish entrepreneurs and destroys the sense of community.”

She said "the issue of women’s rights is especially topical … as it concerns half of our society."

Nowacka added: "For things to be normal and decent, for everyone to feel secure, we need free, fair and democratic elections."

She told the news conference the ruling conservatives would "seek to use state funds to help finance their election campaign." She stated: “They have millions of zlotys. We have citizens, including more than 50,000 people ready to monitor the elections.”

In January, Civic Coalition leader Donald Tusk called for greater public scrutiny of election rules to avoid cases of "manipulation and fraud" in this year's parliamentary vote.

The former prime minister’s appeal came after Polish lawmakers approved changes to the country's election law, designed to increase voter participation and expand access to polling stations, according to the ruling conservative Law and Justice party.

Last month, Poland's lawmakers approved a government plan to combine parliamentary elections on with a nationwide referendum on issues including illegal migration.

In the parliamentary elections, Poles will head to the ballot box on October 15 to elect 460 new MPs and 100 senators for a four-year term.

The Law and Justice party and its government coalition allies have maintained a clear lead over the opposition in most recent surveys, polling ahead of the Civic Coalition (KO) and the far-right Confederation group.

The ruling conservatives in 2019 won a convincing victory over opposition parties at the ballot box, securing a second term in power.


Source: PAP, gazetaprawna.pl