The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia holds discussions with court presidents regarding the status of establishment process of courts that look into election related issues, and what is expected of stakeholders.
The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE), in the presence of the Board’s Deputy Chairman Wubeshet Ayele and Federal Supreme Court Vice President Solomon Areda held discussions with regional court presidents and senior officials regarding the status of establishment process of courts that look into election related issues and what is expected of stakeholders on January 11, 2021.Wubeshet Ayele and Solomon Areda opened the forum via their respective remarks. In his speech, Wubeshet emphasized on the importance of the consultation and said it is important to distinguish between the common and separate responsibilities of the Board and the courts and to understand the limits of the Board’s authority. Solomon Areda, for his part, said the election is evidence of the prevalence of rule of law. He stressed that the legitimacy of the election can only be ensured by ensuring fairness in the process.
Following the remarks, the briefing of the experts continued. The legal expert Getachew Assefa (Dr.) gave a briefing about the Election and Political Parties Registration and Electoral Ethics Proclamation No. 1162/2019. Then, Solomon Girma gave briefing about the structure, organization and hierarchy of authority of the electoral tribunals on election matters. Following the explanation by the two experts, Tesfaye Nawai moderated the panel and a number of comments were forwarded by the participants. Presidents of the regional courts commended the preparation of the forum and said that there should be more similar forums in the future. The presidents highlighted the logistical and resource shortcomings they face. The vice president of the Federal Supreme Court, Solomon Areda, said that the fact that they informed their problems will help the efforts to solve the problems in collaboration and efforts will be made towards this end. Various questions and ideas were also entertained in two rounds.
In the concluding session of the discussion, Solomon Areda forwarded his speech saying that disagreement might arise amidst any competition, and the disagreements that may arise between the rival parties should not be seen differently. The key thing is having the preparation to pass efficient and effective decisions whenever disagreements come about. He added that the debate/disagreement over the May election would not only emerge in May, noting the importance of preparing beforehand. He said the existence of such forums has a key role to have a uniform preparation nationwide and thanked stakeholders who helped realize the panel.