Some voters in Germany’s capital, Berlin, may have to re-cast their ballots after the country’s federal election czar filed an official complaint over irregularities in a parliamentary vote held two months ago.
The election – which saw Berliners decide the makeup of the German parliament, the Bundestag, as well as select city representatives – was marred by irregularities at numerous polling stations, according to the official, Georg Thiel.
One of the biggest problems was a shortage in ballots, long wait times and lengthy lines. In some cases, voters were also seen casting their ballots past a 6pm cutoff – the time when all polling stations were supposed to have closed. Local media reports that Thiel saw the above and raised objections in Berlin, where he was charged with supervising federal elections.
Thiel identified six Berlin constituencies with irregularities, possibly setting up a re-do in the city.
It is now up to a special Bundestag committee to examine Thiel’s complaint and see if the reported violations ran afoul of German law or electoral procedures. The vote cannot be repeated if at least one of the violations is found serious enough that it has affected the distributions of seats in Bundestag.
The September 26 election saw outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives take a historic beating, with the social democrats coming out on top. Since then, the Social Democratic Party (SPD), has been in talks to form a coalition with the Greens as well as the Free Democratic Party. The trio is expected to announce an initial deal by next week.
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