Africa: AU Commission Supports the Association of African Electoral Authorities

THE Association of African Electoral Authorities (AAEA) is holding its Executive Committee meeting in Accra, Ghana, with the support of the Department of Political Affairs, Peace and Security (PAPS) of the African Union Commission (AUC).

The meeting has gathered several chairpersons of Election Management Bodies (EMBs) with the main aim of exploring strategies for revitalising the Association in order to render it more effective in supporting African EMBs in managing elections in line with international and continental norms and standards of democratic elections.

A communiqué released by Mr Robert Gerenge, the Principal Advisor to EMBs at the Department of Political Affairs, Peace and Security availed that the Executive Committee meeting is the first face-to-face meeting of the AAEA Executive Committee since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The meeting builds on the virtual conference held in the early months of the Covid-19 pandemic, in which African EMBs shared experiences and explored strategies for effectively organising elections during public health emergencies.

This meeting occurs when some African countries have experienced unconstitutional changes in governments and are undergoing political transitions that directly impact on the conduct of peaceful, democratic and credible elections. The AAEA, therefore, occupies a central place in promoting democratic renewal by supporting EMBs as essential pillars for democratic governance.

“It should be noted that the AAEA is a continental organisation made up of African EMBs. The AUC is the principal partner of the Association as stipulated in the AAEA Charter in promoting the management of democratic elections on the continent. In this regard, the PAPS Department, in partnership with the AAEA, convenes an annual continental forum of EMBs, which serves as a policy platform for peer-learning on election management in Africa,” said Mr Gerenge.

AAEAis dedicated to the professionalization of election administration through information exchange and regional networking. The Association was conceived at the Colloquium of African Election Authorities held in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe in November 1994 and since then has developed into an Association with sixteen full members and six associate members.

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