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The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia Holds a Consultation Forum on the Registration Process and General Operations

National Electoral Board of Ethiopia held a consultative forum on candidate registration and general operations on March 8, 2013. The forum was held with the participation of political parties in the media. The Chairman of the Board, Birtukan Mideksa, launched the program as part of a series of consultative forums that have been taking place since the announcement of the election timetable. She provided an overview of candidate registration and related operations. She added that in order to increase transparency and fairness, the order of the candidates on the ballot paper will be determined by lottery. Following the chairperson's briefing, a member of the Board's Operations Unit was asked to comment on the complaints and responses made during the registration of candidates.

Among the participants who expressed their views, one of them was arrested during the registration process and was released and able to register due to the efforts of the Board. He thanked the Board for getting him released and for allowing him to register as candidates. He also expressed concern over the situation in the area and called on the board to resolve the issue. Similarly, describing the difficulties faced by other political parties during the registration of candidates, representatives thanked the Board for its prompt response to the complaint and also explained the problems that have not been resolved yet.

To facilitate the resolution of grievances during the registration of candidates through text messaging and telephone as well as all the options available to the parties, it is stated that the Board will not be able to handle the complaints following the completion of the registration of candidates. However, it was explained that he would respond to the issues under review with sufficient information and that the registration of candidates would not be completely closed.

The idea of the election debate was another item on the agenda of the forum; Presented by the Board's Communication Affairs Advisor. The advisor explained that the board had prepared a submission form and made an open call to all, in response to a request for assistance from civil society organizations and the media regarding the modalities for conducting the debate. Accordingly, 23 organizations have submitted applications, and five of these are described as mass media. The scope of the application and the content and limitations of the applications are also discussed.

Participants commented on the proposal, which was answered by the Board's Chairman and Communications Officer. The chairperson said that a party that wants to know the details of the applications submitted by civil society organizations and the media can come from the communication department of the board. Access to debate proposals is open until Monday, March 22, 2021.

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