Needs assessment mission


Fabio Bargiacchi, ECES Executive Director and PEV-SADC Project Director, Eva Palmans, PACTE Coordinator and senior electoral adviser, and Constantin Van Paemel, PEV-SADC Finance and Operation Manager conducted the NAM in Mozambique. The mission took place from 2 to 11 September 2013 and was driven by the main objective to gain greater understanding over issues relating to electoral conflict and violence in Mozambique. The mission targeted various stakeholders ranging from civil society organizations (national and international), to EMB, academia, political parties, police and diplomatic community. The main interlocutor was the Observatorio Eleitoral, organisation member of the ESN-SA and one of the beneficiaries of PEV-SADC, established in 2003 and composed of eight members.

The political environment is marked by traces of the long-lasting civil war from 1976 to 1972 and Mozambique is expected to face several boiling points surrounding the upcoming 2013 and 2014 elections steaming from the polarised political climate dating back to Mozambique's independence. Mozambique held its first ever-democratic presidential and legislative elections in 1994 and from 1994 to 2009, four general elections, three municipal elections and one election to the provincial assembly were held. In terms of violence, the general conclusion of the EU EOM held in 2009 was that the electoral campaign was more peaceful than observed in previous elections. Party leaders who called for 'restraint and mutual respect' addressed the occurrences of isolated cases of violence.

The Observatorio Eleitoral and its members have an outstanding experience in election related activities such as voter education, election observation but also in conflict management and mediation. As result of the assessment mission, it was showed that Observatorio Eleitoral needs to further enhance its capacity in order to face the coming election and reach its targets such as achieving the neutrality of organizations involved in the electoral observation in order to ensure the quality and credibility of their work; strengthening internal institutional capacity and national and international exchange with other institutions involved in the electoral process; the education and information of voters in order to allow for a more rational electoral choice and to contribute to reduce the levels of abstention in elections, the observation of the voter registration processes and electoral campaigning; continuing and improving parallel vote tabulation; and continuing training in this area in order to become independent from external expertise.



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