Riigikogu election staff to number around a thousand in Tallinn
Organizers involved in the Rigiikogu elections total close to a thousand in Tallinn. The staffers will mostly be involved in work at polling stations, many of which are to be located in schools and shopping malls.
Priit Lello, Tallinn Election Committee chair and Head of City Office expressed his thanks in advance for the volunteers' work, and said that these, along with the cooperation of political party workers and under the framework of Estonian electoral law, will engender transparency and fairness on polling day, March 5.
Tallinn City Government says that the Riigikogu Election Act, a piece of national legislation applicable across the country, requires each electoral district sub-division (ward) committee be appointed by the local authority and by political parties running, split 50:50 where possible.
Each of these committees is responsible for organizing and overseeing voting at polling stations, for the election count once polls close, and also for some other tasks such as attending a voter's residence in cases of home voting (for instance for those unable to reach a polling station due to health issues).
Each committee member must demonstrate proficiency in the Estonian language, and must also have the right to vote themselves – in other words, to be an Estonian citizen.
These committees total 826 people, the city government says, in other words the bulk of electoral staff. 562 of these are core members, and the remaining 183 are alternate members ready to deputize where needed.
Tallinn city council adopted a decision Thursday to set up a ward committee for each of the electoral wards in the capital.
There are 81 of these.
Meanwhile the political parties themselves submitted 249 workers, to take part in the committee work, the city government says.
Tallinn comprises three electoral districts (of a total of 12 nationwide for Riigikogu elections) and consequently the largest number of voters.
Polling day is preceded by an advance voting period, starting February 27, which includes not only the option to vote online, but also in person at selected polling stations.
Online votes can be cast and recast, within reason, in an effort to avoid election corruption, and can also be superseded on polling day itself, with a paper vote.
Online e-votes are not tied to any specific district, but the overall vote will be announced at the same time on the evening of Sunday, March 5. In previous Riigikogu elections, the e-vote had been announced separately from, and ahead of, the paper vote.
Voters must provide ID on presenting at a polling station.
More information on the Riigikogu elections in English is available from the National Electoral Committee (VVK) site here, while Tallinn City Government has information on the set-up in the capital, here.
ERR News' 2023 Riigikogu elections FAQs are here.
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Editor: Andrew Whyte