DUSHANBE, May 12, 2011, Asia-Plus -- Four representatives from the European Union and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) will monitor parliamentary by-election that will take place in Dushanbe’s constituency # 4 (Sino district) on May 15, the source at the Central Commission for Elections and Referenda (CCER) said.

According to him, they have already been registered with the CCER.  The source noted that diplomatic missions and international organizations active in the country had not applied to the CCER for registration of their representatives as observers to monitor the upcoming by-election.

“The U.S. Embassy in Dushanbe applied to the CCER at the very beginning of the election campaign for registration of its representative as observer, but they recalled the request after the Islamic Revival Party (IRP) withdrew its candidate for the by-election,” he noted.

We will recall that the May 15 by-election for Dushanbe''s Sino district is to fill a seat in the lower chamber (Majlisi Namoyandagon) of parliament that fell vacant in March when incumbent Shermahmad Shohiyon was appointed to head CCER.

Four candidates are competing to fill the Majlisi Namoyandagon seat vacated by Shohiyon -- Amirqul Azimov nominated by the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDPT), Muzaffar Mirzoyev nominated by the Agrarian Party (APT) and two self-propelled candidates, including Tolibshoh Saidzoda, editor-in-chief of the Dushanbe weekly Millat (Nation), and Safarbek Mannonov, deputy director of the National Medical Center.

The IRP has withdrawn its candidate for the by-election because its representatives have not been included in lower-level commissions at polling stations.

Dushanbe’s constituency # 4 reportedly numbers some 70,000 voters and 48 polling stations are expected to be set up in the constituency.

The Majlisi Namoyandagon -- the lower chamber of parliament -- consists of 63 deputies elected for a five-year term.  Twenty-two seats are divided among parties that gain more than 5 percent of the vote, and the remaining 41 deputies are elected from single-mandate constituencies.