MOSCOW, October 6 (Itar-Tass) —— Election law experts do not rule out that the Bryansk regional court’s ruling to deny registration to the region’s acting Governor Nikolai Denin as a gubernatorial candidate was politically motivated and made under pressure.
Moreover, the executive director of the Russian Fund for Free Elections, Igor Bogdanov, thinks that this may signify the emergency of a new “dirty technology”.
“Raising the question of cancelling registration just a week before the voting suggests that there are technological aspects in this story that were planned well in advance,” he said on Saturdaym, October 6.
There are reasons to speak about “a prepared technology that was tested at the Bryansk elections”, he added.
Bogdanov recalled that the registration of candidates in the gubernatorial elections in Bryansk ended almost a month ago, and no one has tried to question the lawfulness of Denin’s registration since then. He believes that it is not accident that the opposition was waiting until the last moment.
In his opinion, the municipal filter introduced by the new election law is a simple and reliable tool. “No one doubts that it played its role in direct gubernatorial elections” to be held in five regions on October 14 after an eight-year pause.
Bogdanov said assertions that some of the signatures of municipal deputies in support of Denin were fake turned out to be wrong. And it was these assertions that provided the basis for the court ruling. “All deputies whose signatures were questioned by the opposition have confirmed that they had supported Denin’s nomination as a gubernatorial candidate,” he said.
He believes that the Supreme Court will resolve the issue. At the same time, he does not rule out that the Bryansk regional court’s ruling was “politically motivated and made under pressure”.
“This must be investigated,” he added.
A member of the Public Chamber and the executive director of the “Civil Control” Association, Georgy Fyodorov, described the Bryansk regional court’s ruling as doubtful and strange especially in light of the fact that it was made a week before the elections.
“Civil Control was in Bryansk and found no signs of trouble, the election campaign was moving smoothly,” he said.
Fyodorov also believes it necessary to conduct an investigation to seek if pressure was exerted on the court or attempts were made to bribe it. This is probable since Denin’s main opponent has large financial resources.
The expert also stated that all municipal deputies whose signatures were questioned by court have already confirmed that they gave their signature in support of Denin.
He stressed that the Supreme Court should examine the case. “One has to fight,” he added.
Earlier this week, Central Election Commission Deputy Chairman Leonid Ivlev told Itar-Tass that the Commission was “surprised by the Bryansk regional court’s ruling that cancelled Denin’s registration”.
“The actions of the Bryansk election commission to register Denin were absolutely lawful,” he said and added that “the Central Election Commission is advising the Bryansk region election commission on how to prepare an appeal to the Supreme Court”.