Luhansk team

rapporteur: Michael MacKay, Short-Term Observer

Team Leader:    Dariya Kashuba


        Team Members:     Tom Allison

                                        Alex Andrusevich

                                        Lesia Dmytryszyn

                                        Don Fudge

                                        Danylo Klufas

                                        Michael MacKay

                                        Bohdan Maslo

                                        Christina Sawchyn

                                        Paulette Schatz

                                        Bohdan Wynnyckyj

Україна

Ukraine

Луганська область

Luhansk oblast

 

The Government of Canada sent about 200 short-term observers (STOs) to the second round of the presidential election in Ukraine, which was held on February 7, 2010.  I was one of these observers, accredited by the Central Election Commission of Ukraine, and was deployed with a team of Canadian election experts to Luhansk oblast in eastern Ukraine, with the aim of observing if the conduct of the vote there was in keeping with international democratic standards and with the law of Ukraine.


There were only some 2,000 international observers --- including the Canadian contingent, the Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe, and others --- and we had to cover over 33,000 polling stations organized into 225 districts.  Ukraine is the second-largest country by size in Europe (after Russia), with a population of over 47 million people.  With my partner, I covered District #114 in Luhansk oblast, and we did our best to do a representative canvas of the 195 polling stations there.  On election day, we observed an opening in one poll, voting throughout the day in 10 other polls, and a closing in one more polling station.  Winter weather with snow blowing across the steppe made for special challenges --- but folks in Ukraine know how to lend a hand to push a car out of a snowbank, just like in Canada!