The CEC has just completed the counting of the votes, which started Saturday evening. Following the counting, the CEC used the Sainte-Laguë method to translate the number of votes into seats. Sainte-Laguë is one of the best recognized methods to distribute seats under a system of proportional representation. In a press conference Sunday at the Media Center, the CEC declared the preliminary results for all 93 localities which participated in the elections, the turnout for which was around 55%. The percentage of blank ballots cast was 1.8% and the invalid votes were 1.4% of the total.
Prior to the declaration, the CEC commissioners convened to look into the complaints which came from the observation missions. The CEC concluded that these complaints did not influence the results significantly enough to warrant action. However, it is worthy of mention that the CEC received a number of complaints from observing missions on polling day, and these complaints were treated on the spot. The CEC will publish the reports of the observers on its website once the final reports have been submitted.
Dr. Hanna Nasir, Chairman of the CEC, said “Despite the fact that the local elections law gives the CEC 72 hours to declare the results, the CEC declared the results in less than 24 hours to inform the citizens and enable them to challenge the outcomes.”
Article 55 of the Local Council Elections Law says “Each voter, or candidate, or candidate’s agent may contest the announced elections results before a competent court within one week from the announcement of the results. The court shall issue its decision within five working days from the date the claim is submitted to it, and shall inform the Central Elections Commission of its decisions to implement them accordingly. If the court’s ruling is to cancel all the electoral process or parts of it, the elections shall be conducted within four weeks from the date the decision is issued in accordance with the provisions of this law, and shall adopt in the second electoral process the voters’ list used in the first electoral process”
The CEC would like to thank His Excellency President Mahmoud Abbas for his support of the CEC in addition to the Prime Minister, cabinet members, political parties, electoral lists, local and international media, observers, guests, and voters. Finally, they especially wish to thank the CEC team who worked diligently to achieve fair, transparent, and impartial elections.