United Nations
Information Centre | Nepal
What Happens After The Polls Close?
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1. On 10 April when the polling has officially ended, all the ballot boxes from all polling centres of the constituency have to be delivered by the Polling Officers to the Returning Officer at the district headquarter. During the transportation of ballot boxes, representatives of political parties or their agents are allowed to go along with the team provided they are returning on foot. If the team is returning in a vehicle priority will be given to polling staff and polling materials. The availability of space will determine how many party representatives or their agents can accompany the polling team accommodating to the greatest extend possible the representation of all candidates.
2. Once all the ballot boxes of all the polling centres of their respective constituency have been received, the Returning Officer posts a notice in his/her office informing political parties , candidates and the general public of the venue, date and time for starting the count.
3. Any political party or candidate may, if they so wish, appoint and send their agent to the venue where the vote count will take place.
4. The counting of the votes will commence at the place, date and time specified in the notice posted by the Returning Officer.
5. If there is space enough in the counting centre, the counting of FPTP and PR ballots takes place simultaneously. If there is no space then the FPTP ballots will be counted first, and once the count is completed, the PR ballots will then be counted.
6. The Returning Officer verifies in front of political parties' and candidates agents, whether the name of the polling centre, the code number, and the serial number of the ballot box are intact on the box; whether the ballot box has been opened or broken into, and whether the security seal affixed to the ballot box has been tampered with or broken.
7. Counting begins with the security seal numbers of one ballot box for the FPTP or PR race read out for political parties or candidate agents and the seal cut/broken and the lid of the ballot box opened.
8. Where there appears to be an anomaly in the examination of the ballot boxes, the Returning Officer prepares a ‘recognizance deed’ which is signed by the political parties, the candidates or their agents. If the matter cannot be resolved, the Returning Officer informs the Election Commission. The ballot box in question will then be kept in a safe place and the counting of the ballots of this particular ballot box will start after the problem is resolved in accordance with the decision of the EC
9. All ballot papers contained in that ballot box will be counted to verify that the number of ballots corresponds to the total number of votes cast at that polling centre.
10. Once the reconciliation of boxes for a few polling centres is completed the ballot papers of more than one polling centre will be mixed together in order to ensure the secrecy of votes cast to a particular party or a candidate in a particular polling centre and then the mixed ballots will be counted.
11. A policy is already in place to decide under which circumstances ballot papers are considered invalid.
12. In the course of counting, ballots deemed invalid will be set to one side.
13. The invalid ballot papers are counted first. Only after that is completed will the valid ballot papers for each candidate/party be counted.
14. The counting officer shall, while counting the votes, show the valid and invalid ballots to the representatives of political parties or their agents. Party representatives and agents are not allowed to touch or mark the ballot papers.
15. During the counting process, before the ballot papers are wax-sealed [see step 16], representatives of political parties or their agents may submit a written request to the Returning Officer for the purpose of recounting, explaining the reasons for such request. The Returning Officer is the ultimate authority responsible for deciding over the issue of a recount.
UNMIN ,   (2008 )
Type / Script:
Press Release in English
Thematic Group:
 UNMIN : Peace and Conflict through Political Mission
01.01.00  -  Political Conditions, Institutions, Movements
Reference Link:
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