Japan to Support Ethiopia’s 2020 National Election

ADDIS ABEBA – The government of Japan is set to sign a 3 million US dollars financing deal with the UN Development Program to support the national election in Ethiopia, which is scheduled for 2020.

The fund will be channeled through UNDP’s multi-partner program “Supporting Elections for Ethiopia’s Democracy Strengthening (SEEDS)”.

UNDP signed with the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) a 40 million USD support document in June to raise support through the program in a bid to help Ethiopia hold credible elections in a coordinated manner.

Japan will become the fourth country, after Ireland, UK and Denmark, to be on-board of SEEDS program by signing a 3 million USD support deal on Thursday.

The agreement will be signed between Japanese ambassador to Ethiopia, Daisuke Matsunaga, and UNDP Ethiopia Resident Representative, Turhan Saleh.

The support will go towards the procurement of transparent ballot boxes and indelible ink markers, said UNDP in a statement sent to The Daily Monitor.

Japan will also be supporting the in-country transportation of these items, it added.

The SEEDS program seeks to strengthen the institutional capacity of NEBE to efficiently deliver on its mandate to enhance public trust and confidence in the election process.

It also aims to help the board adopt relevant technologies; resolve election-related disputes; and complement NEBE’s voter-education programs, according to UNDP.

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Photo Caption: While briefing reporters end of May, chairperson of NEBE Birtukan Mideksa confirmed that the Board has asked the Parliament for 3.7bln birr ($129 million USD) budget for the upcoming election.