A team of European Union Elections Observation Mission (EOM) has arrived in the country ahead of the upcoming May 21 Tripartite elections as parties have stepped up their campaign and launch of their manifestos to woe the people to vote for them.

The mission has come after an invitation from Malawi to observe the tripartite elections.

The mission will issue a preliminary statement of its findings at a press conference in Blantyre shortly after the Election Day. 

A more comprehensive final report, including recommendations to improve future elections, will be published approximately two months after the end of the electoral process.

Miroslav Poche, a member of the European Parliament from the Czech Republic is the designated Chief Observer of the 2019 EU EOM.

High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission Federica Mogherini said: 

“The tripartite elections are an important milestone for Malawi. The decision to deploy an Election Observation Mission reflects the European Union’s long-term commitment to supporting credible, inclusive and transparent elections in the country and elsewhere in the Southern Africa region. Under the leadership of Chief Observer Poche, the EU EOM will make a substantial contribution to Malawi’s work to consolidate its democratic institutions.”

The head of Mission, Miroslav Poche said: “I am honoured to have been selected to head the EU Election Observation Mission for the 2019 tripartite elections. These elections are an opportunity for Malawi to build on what was achieved in 2014 and to further strengthen the country’s democracy.”

“Building transparency and accountability around all the institutions involved in the elections is essential for public trust and confidence in the process, and I hope that our mission can play an important role in contributing to this goal. I trust that state bodies and political parties will all play their part in promoting a credible and peaceful process.”

The Electoral Observation Mission’s core team, consisting of eight analysts, arrived in Blantyre on April 4 and will stay in the country until the completion of the electoral process.

Core team members will be joined by 28 long-term observers in mid-April and 32 short-term observers shortly before the Election Day.

The EOM is independent in its findings and conclusions. EU observers adhere to a strict code of conduct for international election observation – they maintain strict neutrality and impartiality in the course of their work and do not interfere in the electoral process.

The EU has been involved in deploying of EOMs to Malawi in 2004, 2009 and 2014, and have also held Election Follow-up Missions in 2013 and 2017 as part of the EU’s long-term commitment to support democracy in the country.

Source : Kulinji Online

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