Parties facing court proceedings if annual reports not submitted
The Tartu County Court Registry Department initiated
supervisory proceedings against two small political parties which have not submitted their annual reports for the 2017 financial year.
The parties are the Eesti Vabaduspartei - Põllumeeste Kogu (the Estonian Freedom Party - Farmers' Assembly) and the Eesti Iseseisvuspartei (the Estonian Independence Party).
Both parties have six months to submit the missing annual reports and documents justifying the continuation of their existence as registered parties. Both parties have also failed to submit their annual accounts for the 2018 financial year, for which monitoring procedures can be initiated in January 2020.
Data from the Political Parties Financing Surveillance Committee's (ERJK) register of non-profit organizations and foundations shows that the mandate of the members of the board of the Eesti Vabaduspartei - Põllumeeste Kogu expired in 2013.
The Commercial Register shows the Eesti Vabaduspartei - Põllumeeste Kogu has 769 members and the Estonian Independence Party has 1,912 members.
A monitoring procedure was also initiated against another small party, Rahva Tahe (The Will of the People's Party ) because it has an inactive website. The Law on Political Parties states a regsitered political party must maintain a website to display information, which it submits to the registry department. However, the party's registration data does not show a website address, the ERJK says.
The registration department of Tartu County Court required Rahva Tahe's Board to submit the missing data to the registrar within 20 days. The Commercial Register shows the partye has 598 members
Deceased members on lists
The ERJK was also interested in how the registry department controls the removal of deceased persons from political parties' lists.
The Registrar's Department replied that the de-listing procedure is automated. The information system queries the persons on the list of political parties with the population register. Deceased persons are automatically removed from a party list and the party management board is informed.
The County Court Registry recognizes that, up to Nov. 28, 2019, inquiries into deceased persons on lists of party members were very lengthy. Due to the long duration of the request, the lists may also still contain data on deceased people. The registry department promises checking deceased persons will become more functional in the future.
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Editor: Helen Wright