NEBE Prepares to Conduct Election According to the Schedule

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Addis Ababa May 15/2019 The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) is making comprehensive preparations for the upcoming election scenarios to be held as per the schedule, the Board said.

Communication Advisor for NEBE, Solyana Shimelis, told ENA that the Board has started its 2020 election preparations in advance to ensure the electoral process to be trusted by all stakeholders.

After swearing in the parliament, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has vowed to the public that the ultimate goal of his administration would be to ensure a democratic election to take place in Ethiopia.

Creating apposite political environment, dialogue among political parties, amending proclamations and laws are some of the preparations of the Board prior to the election date, she said.  

Solyana stated that establishing impartial, democratic and fair electoral institution is the core of the preparations to make trust held election by all political parties and the general public in an electoral board.

She pointed out that the preparations are classified into three main sections, which include amending laws and proclamations, establishing dialogue with political parties and helping the civic societies on how to engage on the election process.

“Regarding amending the laws, we already ratified proclamation on the reinstatement of the Board and we believed that this law will enable us to establish a neutral body,” she said.

According to the Communication Advisor, the Board is finalizing restructuring itself on the basis of the amended proclamation.

“We already started to reorganize the Board at the federal level, and this will be replicated to the regions mainly because establishing a neutral structure that’s free from any pressure is mandatory for us. So, we believe that the restructuring will be finalized very soon,” she said.

Solyana indicated that the Board is on process to get the approval of the new election law that is aimed at ensuring the democratic participation of the parties throughout the election period.

The Board is transforming from delivering ‘free and fair’ elections to providing ‘genuine and credible’ elections at the root of which lies trust in the Board, she said.

However, opposition parties insisting for the creation of an all-inclusive and enabling political environment requires a detailed negotiation and agreement on what they referred to as “the rules of the games”.

“We are conducting various discussions with parties and other concerned bodies to gather enough impute for the election law, and the upcoming law will be a governing framework for the next elections,” the Communication Advisor said.

Likewise, she stated that the preparation of civic education manuals for voters is undertaking to help the civic societies to contribute their share on the peaceful election.

This, she said, is an imperative feature in ensuring that the outcomes of elections are generally accepted by all.

“Based on the overall activities that we are currently undertaking we have a potential to hold the election, based on the time table that the concerned body set for us”, she said. 

Ethiopia is expected to conduct a national election next year as provided by the constitution to execute national election in every five years.