10/18/2023 PIC SBA

Statement by the Ambassadors of the Peace Implementation Council Steering Board

With less than 12 months before the 2024 local elections, the Ambassadors of the Peace Implementation Council Steering Board (PIC SBA) note that BiH authorities have so far failed to bring the Election Law in line with international standards on transparency and integrity of electoral processes and good practices for democratic elections. These amendments have been clearly and repeatedly recommended by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, GRECO, and the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe.

The authorities should ensure the 2024 local elections take place with enhanced transparency and integrity. Citizens should be able to trust the electoral systems, the consistent application of procedural safeguards, and the secrecy of the vote.

Furthermore, the PIC SBA recognizes the central role played by the Central Election Commission (CEC) and urges all political actors to engage constructively and transparently with this institution, in line with the Dayton Peace Agreement. The PIC SBA also warns against any action which could undermine the integrity and impartiality of the CEC and its members and that would violate its status under the law or impede its ability to meet its legal obligations.