International IDEA organised a BRIDGE modular workshop on electoral contestants for African EMBs on 8 – 12 October 2012 in Accra, Ghana.
AusAID through its Africa Governance Fund is providing funds for the continuation of International IDEA projects “BRIDGE Capacity-Building Training for Election Management Bodies in Africa: Support to the IDEA – African Union Joint Activity Plan 2011 – 2013”.
Four BRIDGE facilitators participated in the preparation and delivery of the course:
1. Ibrahima “Ibou” Amadou Niang (International IDEA – Senegalese – Lead Facilitator)
2. Evelyne Ogandaga (Electoral Commission of Gabon)
3. Christine Ndayishimiye (Electoral Commission of Burundi)
4. Laurent Okiki (Electoral Commission of Benin)
Twenty one participants (12 Females and 9 Males) participated in the workshop. The countries represented were as follows: Benin; Burkina Faso; Burundi; Republic of Central Africa; Cameroon; Chad; Congo Brazzaville; Cote d’Ivoire; Democratic Republic of Congo; Gabon; Guinea; Niger; Rwanda; Senegal and Togo. A delegate from the African Union Commission also participated in the training.
Participants understood that If EMBs have good knowledge of the electoral laws and endeavour to respect them always, they will be able to avoid all the negative influence of the contestants. Secondly, if EMBs are always service minded, they will understand that contestants are their valuable customers. So, they need to provide a great service in order to remain in business.
EMBs were encouraged to put themselves in the shoes of political parties. It was believed that, by so doing, they would be in a better position to understand the challenges political parties face in order to anticipate on their needs.
At the end of the training, Evelyne Ogandaga (Electoral Commission of Gabon), Christine Ndayishimiye (Electoral Commission of Burundi) and Laurent Okiki (Electoral Commission of Benin) received their certificate of accreditation as BRIDGE workshop facilitators.