ADDIS ABABA – Two nominees have been announced as the bid to find the next chairperson of the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) reaches the final phase.
The top post at the election board has been vacant since its former chairwoman Birtukan Mideksa resigned in July.
The search for the next chairperson began after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed formed a committee of eight with the task of recruiting nominees.
At least 56 individuals including 4 women were proposed after a call for the public was issued. The recruitment committee screened the proposed candidates and whittled the list down to five before selecting the two nominees.
In a press briefing today, members of the committee announced Ms. Melatwork Hailu and Tadesse Lemma as their final two picks.
The nominees were able to meet the criteria set for the board chairmanship, the committee members said.
Both nominees have previous experiences working with the national election board.
Melatwork, an MA graduate from Harvard University in public administration, served as the board’s chief executive officer for two years.
Tadesse, also an MA degree holder in international relations from Wollega University, served as the head of the NEBE’s Benishangul-Gumuz region branch office.
The recruitment committee will submit their names to PM Abiy who will then nominate one of the two to parliament for appointment.
His nominee needs to secure a majority vote of the parliament to be confirmed as the chairperson of the election board.
The former chair Birtukan left the board last July after serving for four and half years during which she oversaw the 2021 general elections and three referendums in addition to managing political parties.