C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 NOUAKCHOTT 000578
E.O. 12958: DECL: 05/14/2016
TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM PINR EAID KPAO MR
SUBJECT: MORE VOTERS TO BE ABLE TO REGISTER BEFORE
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS IN MARCH 2007
REF: NOUAKCHOTT 409
Classified By: Amb. Joseph LeBaron, Reasons 1.4 (b),(d)
(C) Key Points
-- Voters who failed to register during the recent
registration campaign will have another opportunity to
register in January 2007, in time for the March 2007
presidential election, according to Mauritania's Independent
-- So far, nearly one million Mauritanians have registered to
vote. The government asserts that this represents 96% of all
eligible voters, with fewer than 40,000 left to register.
-- However, a closer look at their figures suggests the
number left to register might be closer to 150,000. And that
higher number does not include the unknown number of
Mauritanians who don't have National ID cards.
-- An Electoral Commission member acknowledged that problems
remain in applying for National ID cards required for voter
-- All that said, the national voter list, even if incomplete
at this stage, appears to be virtually fraud-free. Those
names on the list are the true names of legitimate voters; a
significant achievement, given Mauritania's electoral
-- The UN System Coordinator said that a team of UN auditors
would arrive in June to assess the census process.
She has told Ambassador that she expects the auditors to find
that the census process meets international standards.
-- It would have been even better if Mauritanian voters who
missed -- or were denied -- the opportunity to register could
register before the Parliamentary elections this Fall.
Embassy will keep up the pressure on the government to
re-open lists prior to the November municipal and
-- Remarkably, there is no evidence that ineligible voters
have been placed on the voter lists, a problem that
repeatedly plagued past elections.
-- The transition to democracy underway in Mauritania is far
from perfect, but the problems of which we are aware (reftel)
do not suggest to us that the international community should
withdraw its support for the process.
End Key Points and Comments.