Kyrgyzstan Still Has Not Announced Preliminary Referendum Results

Kyrgyzstan still hasn't announced even the preliminary results of the Sunday referendum on alterations and addenda to the republic's Constitution. As a source in the apparatus of the Central Electoral Commission said on Monday, the more than sixteen-hour delay was prompted by an error in the state-owned automatized computer system Shailoo, which collects results submitted by district and regional electoral commissions. Because of the error, commissions were forced to submit their results to the capital by telephone. CEC officials are now busy summarizing the results "manually," as the source put it.

According to preliminary information, the turnout at the Sunday referendum was about 86% of the 2.5 million people on the voting lists.

Participants in the referendum were to voice their attitude to the president-sponsored alterations to the country's Constitution and to the idea of prolonging the Kyrgyz leader's term of office until the date of expiration of the current constitutional government term in December 2005.

The delay with results of the nationwide referendum is the first such occasion in the history of sovereign Kyrgyzstan. As a rule, the first voting results are announced by 3 or 4 o'clock in the morning, i.e. 8 hours after the end of the voting.

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