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In accordance with Chapter 18 of the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina (“Official Gazette” of Bosnia and Herzegovina, No. 23/01) and Article 23 (c) of the Statute of the Brcko District of Bosnia and Herzegovina (“Official Gazette of Brcko District Bosnia and Herzegovina, No. 1/00”), the Assembly of the Brcko District of Bosnia and Herzegovina, at its 72nd session, held on September 19, 2003, adopts the

ELECTION LAW OF THE BRCKO DISTRICT OF BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA

Chapter 1

General Provisions

Article 1.1

This Law shall regulate the election of the councilors in the Assembly of the Brcko District of Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter: the District Assembly).

All matters which are not explicitly governed by the BiH Election Law shall be governed by the provisions of this Law (“Official Gazette of BiH, No.: 23/01, 7/02, 9/02, 20/02 and 25/02”).

Article 1.2

Elections of the councilors for the District Assembly shall be done on the basis of general and equal right to vote by direct and secret voting.

Article 1.3

The right to vote and to be elected (hereinafter: “the right to vote”) for the District Assembly shall have a person who:

has BiH citizenship;

has permanent residence in the Brcko District of Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter: the District), in accordance with the Election Law of the BiH;

is of legal age;

is registered as a voter. 

Article 1.4

The territory of the Brcko District of BiH (hereinafter: the District) shall be a single electoral constituency.

Article 1.5

Funds for the elections from Article 1.1 of this Law shall be provided for in the District Budget.

Article 1.6

An elected councillor in the District Assembly may hold only one public office. Councillors shall not hold any other public office in the state level or the Entities of the Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Article 1.7

A mandate belongs to the elected office holder and not to the political party, coalition or list of independent candidates which nominated him or her on the candidates list.  The mandate may not be terminated except in the conditions stipulated by law. 

Article 1.8

In cases provided for in the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina the term of office of an elected councilor in the District Assembly shall be terminated before the expiration of the mandate for which he or she was elected if:

he or she resigns;

he or she dies;

he or she has been sentenced to a six (6) months in prison or longer by a valid court decision;

he or she has been deprived of the ability to engage in business activities (declared mentally incapable) by a valid court decision;

he or she is elected or appointed to an office which is incompatible with the office of an elected member of a certain body, as stipulated by law;

he or she has ceased to be registered to vote in the electoral unit from which he or she was elected for a period of at least two (2) years; or

he or she loses the right to be elected for a reason stipulated by law.

The mandate of an elected councillor in the District Assembly shall terminate on the day when one of the reasons for termination of mandate stipulated by law occurs. Notwithstanding item 5 of this Article, the District Assembly shall confirm the termination of the mandate no later than three (3) days after the reason for termination of the mandate has occurred or become known. If an elected councillor of the District Assembly resigns, he or she shall submit resignation in a form prepared by the Election Commission of Bosnia and Herzegovina (hereinafter: Election Commission of BiH). 

In cases provided under item 5 of this Article, the Election Commission of BIH shall confirm the termination of the mandate no later than three (3) days after the reason for termination of the mandate has occurred or become known.

Article 1.9

Candidates of all political parties, coalitions, lists of independent candidates as well as independent candidates and other participants in the election process shall have full freedom to carry out activities during the election campaign in the whole territory of the District. Institutions of the District shall ensure that no obstacles impede freedom of movement of candidates, supporters and voters during the entire electoral process.

Chapter 2

Competent Authorities Responsible for the Conduct of Elections

Article 2.1

The competent authorities responsible for the conduct of elections are the District Election Commission and the Polling Station Committees. Members of the District Election Commission and the Polling Station Committees shall be entitled to receive remuneration for their work in accordance with a decision to be adopted by the District Assembly

Article 2.2

The District Election Commission members shallbe appointed by the District Assembly with the approval of the Election Commissionof BiH for a period of five (5) years and may only be re-appointed for two (2)consecutive terms of office. 

Polling Station Committee members shall be appointedby the District Election Commission for each elections.

Article 2.3

Members of the District Election Commission can be: the Presidents of District Courts, members of the Expert Service of the District Assembly, persons employed in the District Administration and other persons if they meet the conditions prescribed in Article 2.2 of the Election Law of the Bosnia and Herzegovina, and are not in contradiciton with Article 2.3 of the Election Law of the Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Article 2.4

The District Election Commission shall:

1. propose the budget for the District Election Commission and submit the report on its execution to the District Assembly;

2. enact the regulations for the implementation of this Law;

3. ensure that all candidates lists for the District Assembly are made in accordance with the law and shall submit them to the Election Commission of BIH for its approval;

4. monitor the work of the District Institutions during the elections, including the process of voter registration;

5. designate Polling Stations in the territory of the District for voting on all levels of authority in Bosnia and Herzegovina;

6. appoint and train the members of the Polling Station Committees;

7. ensure the security of and delivery of the polling material to the Polling Station Committees for voting at all levels of the elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina;

8. as directed by the Election Commission of BIH, notify voters of information necessary for the conduct of the elections;

9. be responsible for the technical arrangements at the Polling Station and any other technical preparations for the elections;

10. be responsible for the proper counting of ballots at Polling Stations and Counting Centers;

11.compile the results of elections from all Polling Stations in the District, separately for each body for which elections were conducted and forward the results to the Election Commission of BIH; and

12. perform all other tasks as authorized by law and by the regulations of  the Election  Commission of BIH.

Article 2.5

The composition of the District Election Commission and Polling Station Committees shall be multiethnic, reflecting the population of the District, bearing in mind the most recent national census.

If the Election Commission of BiH annuls the appointment of the members of the District Election Commission or Polling Station Committee because of violation of previous Paragraph, it shall notify the District Assembly thereof. The District Assembly shall make new appointments within seven (7) days from the day the decision of the Election Commission of BiH is passed, in compliance with the criteria established in the previous Paragraph.

If the District Election Commission or Polling Station Committee is not properly constituted again, the Election Commission of BiH shall appoint the members of the District Election Commission or Polling Station Committee, in accordance with Paragraph 1 of this Article.

Article 2.6

Unless this Law stipulates otherwise, the District Election Commission shall take decision by simple majority of total number of members.

Article 2.7

The Polling Station Committee shall consist of a President and two (2) or four (4) members depending on the number of voters registered to vote at the Polling Stations. The President and the members of the Polling Station Committee shall have deputies. The appointment of the members of the Polling Station Committee and their deputies shall be made by the District Election Commission no later than fifteen (15) days prior to the date of the election.  If the District Election Commission does not appoint the members of the Polling Station Committee and their deputies in accordance with this Article, then the Election Commission of BiH shall appoint the members of the Polling Station Committee and their deputies.

The President shall manage the Polling Station Committee and be responsible for its lawful work.

The President of the Polling Station Committee shall ensure that the voting process at a Polling Station proceeds without impediments, in accordance with the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Chapter 3

Voters Register

Article 3.1

Central Voter Register contains names and data on citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina who have right to vote in accordance with Article 1.3 of this Law and who are registered to vote.

The District Voters Register shall be established from the data contained in the Central Voters Register, which contains the names and information about all voters who have registered to vote in person or in absence for the District Assembly.

The Department of Public Records of the District Government shall be responsible for the registration of voters residing in the territory of the District, as well as accuracy and validity of data provide for additions to, changes and deletions from the District Voter Register.

The registration of voters residing outside the District shall be under the competence of the Election Commission of BIH, in accordance with the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Deletion from the Central Voter Register shall be under the exclusive competence of the Election Commission of BIH.

The District Voter Register shall be a public document.

Article 3.2

In co-ordination with the District Election Commission, the Department of Public Records shall establish one or more registration centers in public buildings or other locations designated for that purpose, and shall arrange for and train appropriate staff members or other persons authorized to register voter.

The registration of voters shall be conducted in accordance with the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina and regulations of the Election Commission of BIH.

Chapter 4

Certification and Candidacy for the Elections for the District Assembly

Article 4.1

Political parties, independent candidates, coalitions and lists of independent candidates may participate in the elections for the councillors in District Assembly.

In order to participate in the elections, a political party must be registered with the District Basic Court, or competent authority in either Entity, in accordance with the law.  The application for certification must be accompanied by evidence that the political party is registered with the competent authority regularly.  The political party must apply for certification under the same name that it registered with the competent authority.

The Election Commission of BiH shall certify if political parties, independent candidates, coalitions and lists of independent candidates meet the requirements to participate in the elections, based on their application for certification for participation in elections (hereinafter: “the application”).

The application shall be submitted to the Election Commission of BiH trough the District Election Commission accompanied by all documents and data prescribed by the Law. Provided that all requirements stipulated by law are met, the Election Commission of BiH shall certify the application for elections.

Article 4.2

The application for elections shall include a statement signed by the president of political party, coalition or independent candidate in the Brcko District that a political party, coalition or independent candidate shall undertake all activities in compliance with the General Framework Peace Agreement for BiH and the Final Award for Brcko.

Article 4.3

The application of a political party shall include the list of, at least, 200 signatures of voters registered to vote for the District.

After the first elections for the District Assembly, a political party who has a seat in the District Assembly shall be exempted from the obligation to collect signatures for the following elections.

A political party whose member holds a mandate in the Interim Assembly of the Brcko District and who was appointed by the Supervisor for Brcko shall not be exempted from the obligation to collect signatures referred in the previous Paragraph.

A political party shall submit its application no later than 140 days prior to the elections.

Article 4.4

The application of an independent candidate shall include the list of, at least, 100 signatures of voters registered for the District elections.

An independent candidate shall not be exempted from the signature requirement from the previous Paragraph, if he holds a mandate in the District Assembly at the time of submitting an application.

An independent candidate who holds a mandate in the Interim Assembly of the Brcko District and was appointed by the Supervisor for Brcko, shall not be exempted from the obligation to collect signatures referred in the previous Paragraph.

An independent candidate shall submit the application no later than 140 days prior to the election.

Article 4.5

Two (2) or more certified political parties may form a coalition and submit an application under one name to the Election Commission of BIH, in accordance with Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina. A coalition shall submit its application no later than one hundred and ten (110) days prior to the election.

A coalition shall have the status of a political party in the electoral process from the day the coalition application for certification is submitted to until the election results are certified. A political party that is a member of a coalition, may not withdraw from the certified coalition until the election results are certified. 

A coalition may keep its previous certified coalition name only if it consists of the same political parties that comprised the certified coalition in the previous election.

Article 4.6

Two (2) or more certified independent candidates may join together and submit a single candidates list under one name. The list of independent candidates shall submit its application no later than one hundred and ten (110) days before the date of the elections. 

Article 4.7

The number of candidates on the candidate lists of political parties, coalitions or lists of independent candidates may be up to 32. The lists shall be submitted to District Election Commission, which forwards them to the Election Commission of BiH for verification in accordance with the Election Law of the Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Chapter 5

Protection of the Electoral Right

Article 5.1

Any individual, political party or coalition who has a legal interest, or whose right established by the Law was violated, may file a complaint with the District Election Commission no later than three (3) days after the violation occurred, unless otherwise stipulated by law.

The District Election Commission shall have first instance competence in deciding in all matters that are not expressly allocated to the Election Complaints and Appeals Council, pursuant to Article 6.6 of the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Article 5.2

The complaint shall be filed in writing. It shall contain a brief description of the violation and evidence confirming the allegations of the complaint.  The complaint also must be signed by the complainant. If the complainant is a political party or a coalition, it shall be signed by the President or the authorized representative of the political party or the coalition.

The complaint shall be sent to all parties who are named. The parties named in the complaint shall have the opportunity to respond to the complaint in writing within forty-eight (48) hours after receiving the complaint. The District Election Commission may order a hearing of the parties.

The District Election Commission shall adjudicate complaints in accordance with the Rules of Procedure established by the Election Commission of BiH.

Article 5.3

The District Election Commission shall adjudicate the complaint and make a decision no later than forty-eight (48) hours from the expiration of the deadline referred to in Article 5.2, Paragraph 2 of this Law and shall immediately notify the complainant and the other parties of the decision.

The District Election Commission shall reject a complaint filed by a person who is not entitled to do so under Article 5.1 of this Law or shall reject a complaint, which is not submitted in a timely manner

Article 5.4

The District Election Commission may order initiation of measures in order to remove irregularities of complaint as referred in Article 5.3 of this Law, which shall include but are not limited to the adding or deleting a voter(s) name from the Central Voters Register, removing an individual from the voter registration staff or Polling Station Committee, correcting its own decision or a decision of a lower level body or ordering an individual or party to halt activities that are in violation of this Law.

Article 5.5

An appeal to the decisions of the District Election Commission may be filled to the Election Commission of BiH, except in case of violation of the Code of Conduct, as stipulated in Chapter 7 of the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina, that occurred at the Polling Station. An appeal to these decisions shall be submitted to the Election Complaints and Appeals Council pursuant to Article 6.6 of the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

An appeal shall be submitted no later than forty-eight (48) hours upon the receipt of the decision. Provisions of Article 5.2 of this Law related to complaints shall be accordingly applied for the appeals.

Chapter 6

Voting

Article 6.1

Voting shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 5 of the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Election Commission of Bosnia and Herzegovina shall determine form and content of a ballot.

Chapter 7

Rules of Conduct for Political Parties, Coalitions, Lists of Independent Candidates and Independent Candidates

Article 7.1

Political parties, coalitions, lists of independent candidates and independent candidates shall have the right to conduct the election campaign in accordance with Chapter 7 of the Election Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Article 7.2

Upon the proposal of the Mayor, the District Assembly shall issue a decision determining the manner and conditions for usage of public property in election campaign ensuring equitable treatment of all political parties, coalitions and independent candidates.

The decision from the previous Paragraph shall be adopted no later than 90 days prior to the elections.

Chapter 8

The District Assembly

Article 8.1

The District Assembly shall have 29 councillors.

The term of office shall be 4 years and it hall expire upon the certification of the next elections results.

Article 8.2

Mandates are allocated in the following manner:

For each political party and coalition, the total number of valid votes received by that political party or coalition shall be divided by 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, et seq., as long as necessary for the allocation in question. The numbers resulting from this series of divisions shall be the “quotients”.  The number of votes for an independent candidate is the quotient for that candidate.  The quotients shall be arranged in order from the highest quotient to the lowest one.  Mandates shall be distributed orderly from the highest quotient until all the mandates are allocated.

Unless each constituent people (Bosniaks, Serbs, Croats) receives a minimum of three (3) mandates, the mandates shall be subsequently adjusted and given to the candidates of the relevant people from the list of the political party, coalition, list of independent candidates or to an independent candidate that received the highest number of votes and are eligible candidates of the constituent people that did not receive sufficient number of mandates.

If a political party, coalition or list of independent candidates does not have enough eligible candidates of the relevant constituent people, or does not have eligible independent candidate of the relevant people to fill the vacant seats, the mandate shall be transferred to the list of party or coalition, list of independent candidates or an independent candidate, that received the highest number of votes and has more such candidates on its list.

In terms of the previous Paragraph the candidates on the list of political parties, coalitions, lists of independent candidate or independent candidates who meet the requirements of this Law shall be considered ligible candidates.

Article 8.3

If a political party, coalition, or list of independent candidates is allocated the number of mandates equal to the number of candidates on their list and there are still mandates to be allocated, then the remaining quotients of that political party, coalition, or list of independent candidates shall not be taken into account when allocating the remaining mandates. If an independent candidate wins a mandate, then the remaining quotients of that independent candidate shall not be taken into account when distributing the remaining mandates.

If a tie occurs because the quotients are identical, the mandate shall be allocated on the basis of the drawing of a lot

Mandates that are won by a list shall be distributed first amongst candidates on the list who individually received at least five percent (5%) of the total number of valid votes received by that list where these mandates are being awarded in the order of the highest number of votes to the lowest number of votes.  If there are still mandates to be allocated to a list and the candidates remaining are those who received less than five percent (5%) of the total valid votes received by that list, in that case the allocation of the mandates among the remaining candidates from the list will be done according to their order on the list.  

Article 8.4

If the mandate of a candidate from the list of a political party, coalition, or independent candidates terminates in accordance with Article 1.8 of this Law, then the mandate shall be allocated to the next candidate, as set forth in Article 8.2 of this Law.  If the mandate of an independent candidate who did not stand on a list of independent candidates terminates in accordance with Article 1.8 of this Law, then the mandate shall remain vacant.

Article 8.5

Provided that all procedures stipulated in Article 8.4 have been exhausted, and in the event the number of councilors is bellow the majority required by the District Statute for the adoption of laws, early elections shall be held.

The term of office of the Assembly elected in early election shall terminate on the same date the term of previous Assembly would have expired.

The Election Commission of Bosnia and Herzegovina shall set all deadlines that are necessary for the conduct of early elections.

Chapter 9

Transitional and Final Provisions

Article 9.1

This Law shall enter into force eight (8) days after its publication in the Official Gazette of Brcko District of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Brcko District of BiH

Brcko District Assembly

President of the Brcko District Assembly

Mirsad Djapo, graduate lawyer

Brcko, September 19, 2003

Number 0-02-022-291/03 

(affixed by seal and signature)