Sunday 15 September 2019

Ukraine referendum backers lose court case over polling stations

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Supporters of the Dutch referendum on the EU’s treaty with Ukraine have again failed in their legal efforts to force the government to ensure more polling stations are open.

Earlier this month it emerged that many councils plan to cut the number of polling stations they staff on April 6 because of the cost of keeping them open. However, the referendum’s backers say this will make it more difficult to make sure at least 30% of the electorate vote – which will give the result more legal clout.

One group took home affairs minister Ronald Plasterk to court, saying he should make sure councils open enough polling stations and provide extra funding if necessary.

However, judges in The Hague said on Friday the law says nothing about how many polling stations should be open and that this is a matter for local councils, not national government.

One other case, brought against Oldenzaal town council has already failed. A second case, against Son & Breugel, will be heard next week.

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