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Workshops to strengthen the role of CSOs in elections

The first of two five-day workshop aimed at strengthening the role of Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the electoral process has been held in Djerba, Tunisia.

The first workshop, organised by the International Foundation for Electoral System (IFES) and the International Management Group (IMG) in cooperation with the High National Electoral Commission (HNEC), took place from 8-12 March. It was attended by 40 member of the HNEC, as well as representatives from various CSOs from around Libya and some international experts.

“Such events are critical to bridge HNEC and the CSOs,”said the operational head of the EU Libyan delegation, Suzanne Kodsi, ” and to reach out to all the many Libyan communities. It will serve as a good reference of cooperation among international organisations supporting the Libyan transition”.

During the week, participants and lecturers discussed the possible role of CSOs at all stages of the electoral process. They talked about international standards in elections, best practice and how to reach the public. there was also a focus on monitoring the media, voter education and the process of setting up domestic observation missions.

The HNEC resolved to develop a database mapping Libyan CSOs, including ethnic and linguistic minorities. this information will be used to create socio-political maps that will permit more effective outreach to Libyan communities.

In addition to this, the HNEC plans to draw up practical guidelines for CSO involving themselves in elections.

The event was funded by USAID and the European Union. The second workshop will take start this Saturday 14 March.

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