Alari Rammo, responsible for policy and legal matters at the Network of Estonian NGOs, said that last month's Reform Party leadership elections were illegal for a number of reasons.
Rammo told uudised.err.ee on Monday that the first problem is that all voters at a party congress must give a signature, meaning that any votes cast online should automatically be annulled.
Other problems noted by Rammo include the participation of people not registered to vote and the fact that dozens of votes were cast on behalf of people who claimed not to have taken part at all.
If the party will not hold new elections, the illegal votes must be subtracted to find out if the results remain unchanged, said Rammo.
E-votes accounted for around 85 percent of the votes at the congress, by ERR News calculations.
The situation will become clearer, according to Rammo, when the party submits its internal election results to the e-Business Register. “Then the registry department of the county court must decide if the election was lawful,” said Rammo.
Rammo said it is hard to determine who is actually the legal head of the party. “As I understand, the 2011 leadership elections were also illegal e-elections, but those results were somehow accepted by the county court.”
New elections on the horizon?
The Reform Party's council will meet on Saturday to discuss calling a new congress, reported Postimees on Monday.
Kristen Michal, who heads the council, said that council members will hear the results of an internal investigation, then debate improvements to future elections, including the use of mobile phone ID and ID-cards, and probably also discuss whether a new congress should be held to carry out fresh leadership elections.