According to Estonia's National Electoral Committee, a situation in which some of the local governments appealing their forced mergers in court are toying with the idea of holding parallel elections based on the borders which were in force prior to the nationwide administrative reform is not characteristic of a law-based state.
According to committee chairman Meelis Eerik, a do-it-yourself approach to local elections is irresponsible and at variance with legal regulations in force in Estonia, the committee said.
"Estonia is a law-based state in which there are laws and regulations based upon which elections must be held," Eerik said. "As long as the court has not stopped or abolished the regulations taking effect, these regulations are in effect and elections will likewise be held accordingly."
Currently, 13 local governments have contested the government's regulation on forced mergers in the Supreme Court, and the actions of some of these have hinted that they are considering the option of holding parallel elections.
According to the National Electoral Committee, however, their contestation does not mean that the merger decision is void and elections can be held arbitrarily. If election legislation has been adopted by the municipal council as well as the county governor, the county governor's orders as adopted in the course of the administrative reform must be followed.
Election coalitions and candidates for this fall's local elections can be submitted to an election committee established by the county governor by Aug. 16. Advanced voting and electronic voting will begin on Oct. 5 and run through Oct. 11; election day is on Oct. 15.
Editor: Aili Vahtla