LEAD in Durban

National Election Observation Training


ECES is currently in Durban, Kwazulu-Natal to deliver a Leadership and Conflict Management for Electoral Stakeholders (LEAD) focusing on Domestic Election Observation together with regional partner Election Support Network of Southern Africa (ESN-SA). This training is part of the ongoing regional project «Preventing Electoral Violence in the SADC Region- PEV-SADC », funded by the European Union (75%) and cofounded (25%) and implemented by the European Centre for Electoral Support. The 3-day training between 13-15 July 2016 has been organised in partnership with local partners Kwazulu Natal Christian Council (KZNCC) and the South African Council of Churches (SACC).

The training is facilitated by Rindai Chipfunde Vava, Vice Chair of the ESN-SA and Director of the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN), Zefanias Matsimbe, Senior Electoral Expert from Mozambique and Victoria Florinder, ECES Election conflict Management Advisor based between ECES headquarters in Brussels and in the SADC region.

The LEAD training aims to provide participants, mainly those actively engaging in domestic election observation a detailed brush up on the subject matter, while being supported to disseminate knowledge further within their respective observer platforms. The training is also meant to enhance capacities amongst observers to understand conflict better, and it can overlaps with domestic observation and constitute a challenge. South Africa is approaching local elections in early august and domestic electoral observers plays a crucial role.

Home-grown groups that are able to monitor their own elections without external assistance are an essential part of democratic development. To this end, domestic observation is vital for the transparency and ownership of the electoral process as a necessary compliment, and counterpart, to the activities of the political party agents.

In the extension, the training is built to enhance domestic election observer’s capacities in order to further consolidate the credibility of such activities, thus promoting election integrity.

During the 3 day training, participants will be taken through the different aspects of domestic election observation such as the scope and the objective of this activities, the role and the responsibility of a national election observer, the relationships with other electoral stakeholders, the international and regional obligations applicable to national legal frameworks for elections.

Furthermore, the training will also allow participants to have an insight view on the different components of the Domestic Election Observation activity, that includes pre-electoral activities such as the training of observers aimed at ensuring the overall professionalism and credibility of the mission, the development of deployment and communication plans aimed at ensuring the effectiveness as well as the visibly of the action and the development of observation forms for allowing observers to communicate data. In addition to those activities, Domestic Election Observation is also composed by the observation of voting procedures during the E-day and the development of a final report during the post-electoral period.