Structure and form of the ballot
The electoral law authorizes the use of single or multiple ballots, Article 80 of the law prescribes that the model and content of the ballot be determined by decision of the Minister in charge of Territorial Affairs.
- Multiple Ballots: there are as many ballots as candidates or lists of candidates running in the election. In order to cast a vote, the voter must first take a ballot for each candidate before entering the booth. He/she then puts the ballot of the candidate or lists of candidates for whom he/she would like to vote in an envelope and inserts it into the ballot box. The ballots that are not used are folded and tossed into a bin inside the polling station in such a way that nobody will be able to identify them.
- Single Ballot: this is one ballot with the first and last names, photos, or the names and symbols of the parties or lists of candidates competing in the election. In order to cast a vote, the voter must mark the box representing the candidate or list of candidates he/she is voting for. The previous law mandated that the voter dip his/her index finger into an ink pot and leave a fingerprint in the box of the candidate of his/her choice.
Debate over the type of ballot to be used
The use of a single ballot is recent in Mali. It was introduced in 2007 and has the benefit of reducing the cost of the election. The Ministry of Territorial Affairs conducted several awareness campaigns about the use of the single ballot. It also contributes to a reduction in electoral fraud as it is more difficult to falsify.