International IDEA’s project "Capacity-Building Training of Election Administrators in Africa" is a regional training project for election administrators held in partnership with the African Union and is designed to increase the skills and professionalism of election management bodies (EMB) in the region.
The project is part of IDEA’s collaboration with the African Union. IDEA and the African Union (AU) entered into a MOU at the beginning of 2007 and a detailed Joint Activity Plan was launched in September 2008. To achieve the project objectives, a series of BRIDGE election administration training workshops are designed and implemented to build the capacity of participating EMB personnel in two areas: (i) firstly, to enhance their professional development as election administrators and (ii) secondly, to transfer skills to be able to design, organise and run BRIDGE in their home organisations.
BRIDGE participants during a Mock Interview Exercise.
Photographer: Nicolas Garrigue
The BRIDGE Professional Development Workshop that took place in Accra from 9 – 13 March 2009 belonged to the first area. This 5-day workshop was designed for senior EMB personnel covering technical issues of election administration as well as issues specific to senior managers such as strategic planning, leadership, electoral dispute resolution and organisational culture. This workshop followed a similar event held in Pretoria in February 2009 for another group of African EMB representatives of the Southern Africa region. The workshop sought to achieve the following five objectives with the participating EMB representatives:
The Professional Enhancement Workshop was designed for EMB commissioners and senior staff from English-speaking African countries. These categories were represented as follows in the Accra workshop, covering 9 African countries:- 6 EMB Commissioners (including one Chairman from – Ethiopia) – 15 senior EMB staff. In addition to these, IDEA had also invited representatives from organizations supporting electoral processes in Africa: one from the main regional intergovernmental organization (ECOWAS) and one from the civil society (Gorée Institute).
Participants at the BRIDGE 5-day Professional Development Workshop in Accra, Ghana 9-13 March 2009.
Photo Nicolas Garrigue
The workshop was opened by the Australian High Commissioner to Ghana Mr William Williams and the closing ceremony was attended by International IDEA’s Secretary General Vidar Helgesen