Introduction and Implementation of Political Finance BRIDGE Workshops in Nepal

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Regulation of political finance has always been an issue in Nepal. Political party as well as election campaign income and spending have been major concerns for the Election Commission of Nepal (ECN) and electoral stakeholders. As the constitutional body responsible for election management in the country, the ECN also shoulders the responsibility of registering political parties as well as regulating and monitoring their financial reporting. The absence of timely and accurate reporting from political parties has also posed serious questions on their own transparency, as well as the fairness of the overall electoral process in Nepal.

In this regard, with technical and logistic support of the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) in Nepal, and financial support of USAID, the ECN developed BRIDGE customized materials on political finance and conducted a series of trainings for electoral officials and electoral stakeholders.

Conducted between August 2015 and April 2016, the six workshops were aimed at training representatives of various sectors including the Election Commission of Nepal, the media and civil society organizations working in governance, development focusing on women, poor and excluded groups in Nepal. Three of the six workshops were attended by a total of 74 (out of 75) district level election officials (5 women), two by 51 national level journalists (13 women) and one by 25 members of national level civil society organizations (10 women). 51 journalists from various media including radio and television, daily and weekly newspapers and online news attended the workshop.

During the implementation of BRIDGE Political Finance workshops, three semi accredited facilitators were accredited workshop facilitators. BRIDGE Accrediting Facilitator Mr. Shanti Ram Bimali accredited Mr. Hem Raj Aryal to workshop facilitator at the first workshop conducted in Dhulikhel on 15 17 August, 2015 and BRIDGE Accrediting Facilitator Mr. Surya Prasad Aryal accredited Semi Accredited Facilitators Ms. Seeta Samba and Mr. Yub Raj Guragain at the sixth workshop conducted in Chitwan on 31 March to 2 April, 2016. Congratulation to all three accredited facilitators!

 

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