UNDP signed a USD 40 million project document with H.E Birtukan Midekssa, Chair of the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE), and H.E Ahmed Shide, Minister of Finance to support the upcoming election in Ethiopia.
A wide range of development partners have already made commitments to fund the project, led by the United Kingdom and including Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Japan, Norway and Sweden. Other partners may support the project as well. UN agencies involved in supporting the election project include; IOM, OHCHR, UNESCO and UN Women.
UNDP’s role is to integrate contributions from different partners towards the realization of transparent, inclusive, credible and peaceful elections in Ethiopia. The signed project will build the capacity of NEBE to improve its efficiency, transparency and inclusiveness.
The project will assist NEBE to decentralize its units and departments to the regions; build staff capacities in the electoral processes, including effective planning and operational management; enhance communications, dialogue, public trust and confidence; and introduce new technologies, standards and protocols as well as ensure transparency through the inclusion of media in the electoral process.
It will also promote voters’ education and inclusive participation of all segments of society, including women, youth and internally displaced people, civil society organizations and political parties.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, the Chairwoman of the NEBE, said ‘The upcoming general election will be one of the significant events in the Ethiopian political history. We are working to make it different from the previous electoral record of our nation with broaden political space, changes in the political and electoral laws and frameworks.’
Echoing the statement of the Chairwoman, the UNDP Resident Representative stressed that the ‘upcoming elections will have a profound influence on the course of future events in Ethiopia. The breadth and depth of support from development partners demonstrates the high priority that the international community attaches to a successful electoral process.’