Offices, Schools, Commercial Centers to Close for Sidama Referendum: NEBE

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ENA November 17/2019 The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) announced that government offices, schools, and commercial institutions operating in Sidama Zone including the city of Hawassa will be closed on referendum day.
The announcement came after NEBE conducted discussions with pertinent stakeholders.

NEBE indicated that in the move to make the election process peaceful, the referendum will be conducted in a day-off.

Based on electoral and political parties’ proclamation no-1162/2012, any institutions operating in Sidama zone and town administration should respect the decision and discharge responsibility accordingly.

In line with this voter’s registration for Sidama zone referendum has finalized yesterday based on the schedule set by the electoral board.

NEBE Communication Director, Soliyana Shimelis, told ENA that the registration which was taking place in 1692 polling stations has finalized peacefully.

Unless minor problems related to shortage of cards in the first day of voter’s registration, the process was peaceful, she noted.

Preliminary data indicated that more than 2.2 million people have registered to vote.

According to the director, some 300 election observers will be dispatched to observe the election process.

The referendum, which is expected to be conducted on Wednesday 20, 2019, will decide whether Sidama Zone becomes region or continues as zone.