Most of the political parties that run in the parliamentary elections of February 24 do not have persons with disabilities on the lists. Only the bloc ACUM, the People’s Movement Antimafie and the Party of Communists, which are among the 15 parties that compete in the national constituency, have persons with disabilities on the lists of candidates, shows a report compiled by East Europe Foundation for the Coalition for Free and Fair Elections.
In a news conference at IPN, East Europe Foundation expert Andrei Brighidin said only five of the 15 parties included commitments concerning persons with disabilities in their electoral platforms. But these refer more to rises in allowances and less to the authentic inclusion of persons with disabilities in society. The largest part of the information about contenders’ commitments was placed on contestants’ websites and on social networking sites. But these pages do not meet the international accessibility standards for all types of disability. However, the CEC took a number of measures for the persons with disabilities to be able to enter polling places. The persons with visual impairments will be provided with ballot templates. The polling booths were made accessible to persons with locomotion disabilities. Some of the buildings that house polling places were outfitted with ramps.
Valeriu Dragalin, president of the National Youth Council of Moldova, said the young people are also underrepresented even if they constitute 30% of the citizens with the right to vote. The parties with the largest number of young people on their lists of candidates (over 40%) are: the Party “Democracy at Home”, the Ecologist Green Party and the Party of Regions of Moldova. But the last two parties have only two and three young people among the first 15 candidates, the others being placed at the end of the list. The Party “Democracy at Home” and the Our Party have by seven young people among the top 15 candidates. These are followed by the bloc ACUM and the Shor Party that have by four young people. The other parties competing in the elections have by fewer than two young people, while the Democratic Party is the only one that has no young person among the first 15 candidates. In the case of single-member constituencies, most of the young candidates are placed there where the party has smaller chances of winning.
Polina Panaite, secretary general of the Coalition for Free and Fair Elections, said the report shows there are yet problems concerning the ensuring of equal chances of participation in elections. According to Alina Panaite, the narrative of the election contestants in the current campaign centers, as usual, on popular subjects and less on the problems faced by particular groups of people.