Political parties took a great interest in the first local elections held in 252 united territorial communities on October, 29 and December, 24, 2017. These elections also show that the government faces significant challenges on the way to establishing adequate electoral standards. On October, 29, 2017, mayors of UTCs and deputies to local councils were elected in 201 territorial communities, while on December, 24 – in 51 territorial communities.


The Central Election Commission has scheduled the first local elections in 40 united territorial communities in 17 oblasts of Ukraine for 29 April 2018. The corresponding decision was taken on February 16 meeting.


OPORA's long-term observers are providing an independent non-partisan observation of the first local elections in united territorial communities on 24 December 2017, except for electoral processes in Kyiv and Khmelnytsk oblasts. OPORA observed key stages of the election process, including the election day on 24 December 2017. OPORA didn't deploy a network of short-term observers at election precincts, providing a narrow observation.


Observers of Civil Network OPORA haven't noticed any violations during the 24 December election day in united territorial communities, which could have affected the voting process or the election results with the scale or consequences. Most of the detected issues and incidents were caused by unprofessionalism or low competence of PEC members.


OPORA's observers will provide an independent non-partisan observation of the first local elections in united territorial communities. The organization has deployed 69 long-term observers to the territorial communities, and short-term observers joined them right before the voting begins. The first local elections in 202 united territorial communities were held on 29 October 2017. The election process has officially started on 9 September in all Ukrainian oblasts without exception. Dnipropetrovsk and Volyn oblasts have the largest number of united communities participating in the election – 19 communities each. Zakarpattia and Mykolaiv oblasts, on the contrary, have only one community each.


Перед ранковим засіданням двоє невідомих здійснили напад на кандидатку у депутати до  Миколаївської селищної ради, а також у Зайцівській об’єднаній територіальній громаді невідомі зі зброєю напали на виборчу дільницю у селі Майське. Про це повідомив координатор громадського спостереження за виборами у Дніпропетровській області Вадим Головченко під час прес-конференції Громадянської мережі ОПОРА щодо результатів спостереження на перших місцевих виборах у об’єднаних територіальних громадах Дніпропетровської області.


On 29 October 2017, the first elections in 201 united territorial communities will take place. The election process started on 9 September covering territorial communities in all oblasts of Ukraine. The largest number of united territorial community elections will take place in Dnipropetrovska (19) and Volynska (19) oblasts, while in both Zakarpatska and Mykolaivska oblasts, elections will take place in only one community.


The first local elections in united territorial communities proved that the law on local elections needs a complex improvement to guarantee the legal certainty of electoral procedures. Unequal application of the legislation by election commissions and other subjects of the election process did occur during the electoral process in 201 communities.


The major problem in the end of the voting day is still the issuance of ballots without passport verification, despite the percentage of such incidents is much lower, reaching only 3.3% compared to the first half of the election day. In most cases, OPORA's observers prevented the commitment of such criminal offenses. However, even though independent observers respond to such violations, the illegitimate issuance of ballot papers is tolerated by election commissions. Moreover, there were even attempts to legitimize such actions by collegial decisions of commissions.

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