Libre's Missed Date With the TSE

  • Written by  Honduras Weekly

On Monday, the General Coordinator of the Libre Party, Manuel Zelaya, met with the magistrates of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), including David Matamoros, to lodge a formal complaint about alleged fraud in the general elections of November 24. Mr. Zelaya and Mr. Matamoros agreed that the TSE, along with designated representatives of Libre, would review and recount more than 16,000 voter ballot talley sheets -- actas. The understanding was that the Libre representatives would arrive at the TSE's offices in Tegucigalpa this morning at 8:00 o'clock to begin the process. At 2:00 pm, TSE technicians were to have corroborated the documents.

The problem is that the Libre people never showed up. Apparently, Mr. Matamoros did receive a note from Libre at 11:45 on Tuesday evening, but the note made no mention of whether Libre reps would participate in the review of the talley sheets, as had been established the day before. It is unclear what happened. Did Mr. Zelaya change his mind at the last minute? Did Xiomara Castro de Zelaya look at the deal and have second thoughts? Could they not agree on who would represent Libre? Who knows.

 

The only thing that is clear is that a full day within a critical week was wasted. "It is difficult to accommodate them if they do not do their part, said Mr. Matamoros. "To this moment, they have not presented one sole document that proves that there is different data between one talley sheet and another."

 

"They argue that all of the talley sheets have been tampered with. We have been receptive [to their complaints], but we are going to meet with all of the [TSE] magistrates to make a final declaration [about the elections]," added Mr. Matamoros, who noted that the TSE does not want any type of confrontation with Libre... "All we have asked for from the start is that if they have evidence that the talley sheets were changed, that they present it."

 

In the final analysis, it is this matter of "evidence" that may be the problem for Libre. It could well be that, on careful reflection, the Zelayas and other leaders within Libre have decided it's going to be too difficult to demonstrate any wrongdoing. If they can't prove it during a review and recount that they've been a part of, then they're going to find themselves in an extremely awkward situation. What can they say other than, "Well, we couldn't find any proof, but we just know there was massive fraud." As Honduran university student Waleska Zavala was quoted as saying in an Inter Press Service article published yesterday, she did believe “bad things happened in the elections; they stole the elections from us, but they did it with kid gloves, so it’s difficult to prove”. (12/4/13)

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