African Union Deploys Election Observers in Ethiopia

ADDIS ABABA – The African Union Election Observation Mission (AUEOM), led by Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, is in Addis Ababa to observe Ethiopia’s 21 June 2021 General Elections.

Since their arrival on Thursday, Obasanjo and his team held meetings with the Chairperson of the AUC, Moussa Faki Mahamat, and representatives from Ethiopian government and institutions to discuss and brief them about the mandate of the mission.

Preceding the arrival of the Head of AUEOM, African Union said a two-day long orientation and briefing were given for Observers Mission.

The briefing covered details about the political context of the election, such as the preparations by National Election Board of Ethiopia (NEBE), Legal Framework for Elections in Ethiopia, and other presentations from different stakeholders in Ethiopia, and the African Union (AU) election observation methodology, according to the AU.

“The briefing was meant to help observers get a good understanding and appreciation of the legal framework and the conduct of the 21 June 2021 General Elections in Ethiopia before their deployment,” the pan African bloc said in a statement.

The deployment of an AUEOM in Ethiopia is in line with the AU’s mandate of promoting and deepening democracy and democratic elections on the continent.

The Mission comprises eight long-term observers deployed from 2 June 2021, to undertake observation and analysis of key aspects of the electoral process before, during and after the electoral process.

Their observation has taken the political environment, electoral legal framework, the effectiveness and transparency of electoral preparation and administration, and campaign environment, including freedom of the media, into consideration, according to African Union.

“This analysis will form a key part of the AU’s overall assessment of the conduct of the 21st June 2021 general elections in Ethiopia,” the AU said.

The objective of the observation mission is to make an independent, objective and impartial assessment of the Elections in Ethiopia in accordance with the national, regional and international standards for democratic elections, it added.

Observers will be deployed to seven regions of the country and the administrative states of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa.

The regions include Afar, Amhara, Benishangul, Gambela, Sidama, Southern Nations Nationalities & Peoples (SNNPR) and Oromia.

The Secretariat of the AUEOM in Ethiopia is located at Skylight Hotel, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

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