The meetings of election bodies should be open.
- The Parties hereto consider that according to the laws, representatives of mass media and means of telecommunications have the right to: a) attend electoral bodies’ meetings, providing for publicity and openness of their activities.
- Political parties must be equally represented on electoral commissions or must be able to observe the work of the impartial body. Equality may be construed strictly or on a proportional basis (see point I.2.3.b).
- The meetings of the central electoral commission should be open to everyone, including the media (this is another reason why speaking time should be limited). Any computer rooms, telephone links, faxes, scanners, etc. should be open to inspection.
- In the long-standing democracies where there are no electoral commissions but where another impartial body is competent in electoral matters, political parties must be able to observe the work of that body.
- Open meetings are the logical corollary of providing access to recorded or documentary information. (…) Better practice is to require meetings of governing bodies to be open, albeit subject to closure where this is justified. To achieve this, it is important to define the scope of both governing bodies – normally public decisionmaking bodies such as elected bodies, judicial bodies, planning and zoning boards, educational boards and so on – and meetings – which refers to formal or official meetings convened to conduct public business.
- All meetings should be announced in a timely manner, with all relevant documents equally conveyed to all members of the commission in sufficient time to be considered prior to the session.