Press release on the outstanding and remaining elections to take place on June 23, 2024

Press release on the outstanding and remaining elections to take place on June 23, 2024

June 22, 2024

CECOE

Addis Ababa

The Coalition of Ethiopian Civil Society Organizations for Elections (CECOE) has finalized its preparation to observe the remaining and outstanding elections in Benishangul Gumuz, Afar, Central Ethiopia, and Somali regions. 

CECOE has conducted a one-day trainings to a total of 15 Long Term Observers (LTOs)  who were drawn from  its member organizations in Assosa, Semera, Butajira, and Jigjiga cities, and deployd them to observe the pre-election environment.

CECOE also organized trainings for  the Short Term Observers(STOs) on  June 19 and 20, 2024 in Asossa, Semera, Butajira, and Jigjiga cities to equip them with the necessary skills and  knowledge to observe the electoral process on polling day.

In addition, CECOE has also organized simulation exercises for STOs  on how to report  to CECOE’s Data Center  their  observation findings  in real time using the state of art technology SMS and Apollo.

On June 23, 2024 CECOE will deploy a total of 84 stationary observers who will observe the whole election day process in the polling stations where they are assigned to observe the voting processes.

CECOE will publish a comprehensive observation report consisting of the pre-election, election Day and post-election observation findings.

Press release on the outstanding and remaining elections to take place on June 23, 2024

ሰኔ 16 ቀን 2016 ዓ.ም ለሚካሄደው ቀሪ እና ድጋሚ ምርጫ ከኅብረት ለምርጫ የተሰጠ ጋዜጣዊ መግለጫ

ሰኔ 15፣ 2016 ዓ.ም

ኅብረት ለምርጫ

አዲስ አበባ

የኢትዮጵያ ሲቪል ማህበራት ደረጅቶች ኅብረት ለምርጫ (ኅብረት ለምርጫ) በቤኒሻንጉል ጉሙዝ፣ በአፋር፣ በማዕከላዊ ኢትዮጵያ እና ሶማሌ ክልሎች የሚካሄደውን ቀሪ እና የድጋሚ ምርጫ ለመታዘብ ዝግጅቱን አጠናቅቋል።

ቀደም ሲል ኅብረት ለምርጫ የቅድመ ምርጫ ከባቢን ለመታዘብ በአሶሳ፣ ሰመራ፣ ቡታጅራ እና ጅግጅጋ ከሚንቀሳቀሱ አባል ድርጅቶቹ የተውጣጡ 15 የረጅም ጊዜ ታዛቢዎችን በመመልመል የአንድ ቀን ስልጠና ሰጥቶ ማስማራቱ ይታውቃል። 

በተመሳሳይም ኅብረት ለምርጫ በድምጽ መስጫ ቀን የድምጽ አስጣጥ ሂደቱን የሚታዘቡ የአጭር ግዜ ታዛቢዎች አስፈላጊው ክህሎትና እውቀት እንዲኖራቸው ሰኔ 12 እና 13 ቀን 2016 ዓ.ም በአሶሳ፣ ሰመራ፣ ቡታጅራ እና ጅግጅጋ ከተሞች 84 ታዛቢዎች የአንድ ቀን ስልጠናዎችን ሰጥቷል። ከዚህ በተጨማሪም  ለአጭር ግዜ ታዛቢወች የጽሁፍ መልዕክትን  እና የአፖሎ ቴክኖሎጂን በመጠቀም የትዝብት ሪፖርታቸውን ወዲያውኑ በኅብረት ለምርጫ ፅ/ቤት ውስጥ ለተቋቋመው የመረጃ ማዕከል ሪፖርት ማድረግ የሚያስችላቸወን በተግባር የተደገፈ ስልጠና ከመስጠቱም በላይ የማስመሰል(ሲሚዩሌሽን) ልምምዶችን አዘጋጅቶላቸዋል።

ኅብረት ለምርጫ ሰኔ 16 ቀን 2016 ዓ.ም ለሚካሄደው ምርጫ በአጠቃላይ 84 ተቀማጭ ታዛቢዎችን ለማስማራት አቅዷል። እነዚህ ተቀማጭ የድምጽ መስጫ ቀን ታዛቢዎች በየተመደቡባቸው የድምጽ መስጫ ጣቢያዎች  ቀኑን ሙሉ የምርጫውን ሂደት እየታዘቡ የሚቆዩ ይሆናል።

በመጨረሻም ኅብረት ለምርጫ የቅድመ-ምርጫ፣ የድምጽ መስጫ ቀን እና የድህረ-ምርጫ  የትዝብት ግኝቶችን ያካተተ አጠቃላይ  ሪፖርት ይፋ የሚያደርግ መሆኑን መግለጽ ይወዳል።

CECOE Launches “Civic Education for Better Civic Engagement and Political Participation in Ethiopia” Project

CECOE Launches “Civic Education for Better Civic Engagement and Political Participation in Ethiopia” Project

The Coalition of Ethiopian Civil Society Organizations for Elections (CECOE) has initiated a groundbreaking project titled “Civic Education for Better Civic Engagement and Political Participation in Ethiopia”, which aims to enhance civic awareness and democratic participation across the nation. This project is funded by the German Government and supported by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH under the “Support to Good Governance (S2GG) in Ethiopia” programme, aims to enhance civic awareness and democratic participation across the nation.

Civic education in Ethiopia, though part of the general education curriculum, has struggled to instill democratic values or empower the public for meaningful political participation. Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) have recognized the need for enhanced civic education programs that are inclusive and context-sensitive, addressing cultural diversity, regional disparities, and varying literacy levels. By improving their capacity to design and implement effective civic education initiatives, CSOs can help build a well-informed and engaged citizenry capable of driving social change.

The CECOE project is focused on delivering digital civic education through interactive audiovisual (radio spots and video ads), social media, and printed materials. The main objectives of the project include enhancing civic knowledge to improve citizens’ understanding of their rights, duties, governance structures, and the functioning of democratic institutions. It also aims to promote inclusive participation by ensuring equitable access to information and resources and encouraging active involvement in political and civic affairs.

CECOE, a coalition of over 175 local civil society organizations, has a proven track record of promoting civic engagement and electoral participation. During the Sixth Ethiopian General Elections, CECOE’s efforts in deploying several thousand election observers and conducting voter education campaigns were instrumental in reaching millions of citizens. By launching this new project, CECOE aims to build on this success by fostering a more informed and engaged citizenry, capable of contributing to the stabilization and democratization of Ethiopia’s political landscape.

In the context of political volatility and societal challenges, the “Civic Education for Better Civic Engagement and Political Participation in Ethiopia” project contributes to the effort in building a more democratic and inclusive Ethiopia. By equipping citizens with the knowledge and tools to participate in democratic processes, this initiative aims to contribute to the stabilization and democratization of Ethiopia’s political landscape.

Advocacy Success Story: CECOE’s Effort in Improving Voter Education 

Advocacy Success Story: CECOE’s Effort in Improving Voter Education 

The 6th Ethiopian general elections witnessed increased civil society participation in voter education activities following the repeal of restrictive laws. However, the report from the NDI-IRI Limited International Election Observation Mission to Ethiopia (LEOME)1 pointed out that most civil society organizations (CSOs) began their voter education activities only in the final weeks of voter registration. This timing had a detrimental effect on the impact of their initiatives in their respective communities. Recognizing this issue, following the conclusion of the 6th general elections, CECOE conducted an assessment titled “Voter Education Activities by Ethiopian Civil Society Organizations During the Sixth Ethiopian General Elections.”2 to identify challenges in voter education, assess its role in raising awareness and participation, analyze communication methods, measure the effectiveness of creative channels and technologies, and evaluate CSO program reach and efficacy. On April 7, 2022, CECOE organized a validation workshop to discuss the findings of the assessment.  Nearly 50 participants from across the region, including NEBE representatives, attended the workshop. The assessment identified the late February 2021 accreditation by the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) as the root cause of the problem. With limited time remaining, CSOs faced challenges in applying for donor funds and planning activities, resulting in a rushed and less effective voter education campaign. These findings aligned with the NDI-IRI Limited Election Observation Mission to Ethiopia (LEOME) report, further reinforcing the issue.

From Observations to Advocacy

CECOE didn’t stop at highlighting the problem. CECOE developed a commentary titled “Support for Civil Society Organizations Engaged in the Provisions of Voter Education Needs Improvement.”3 This commentary presented a clear solution: The commentary advocated for two options: permanent accreditation for qualified organizations, or significantly earlier accreditation cycles before elections.

A Permanent Solution

CECOE’s advocacy efforts have borne fruit. NEBE has started a permanent accreditation for CSOs engaged in voter education which empowers CSOs to plan and execute comprehensive voter education programs well in advance.

Looking Forward

CECOE commends NEBE’s decision and considers it a significant advocacy success. While recognizing this success, CECOE is dedicated to advocating for other unresolved issues. This success underscores the vital role of civil society advocacy, as CECOE strives to positively impact the electoral process in Ethiopia through research, strategic communication, and unwavering commitment.

  1. https://www.ndi.org/publications/joint-ndiiri-limited-election-observation-mission-ethiopia-report-june-21-2021-national ↩︎
  2. https://cecoe.org/download/assessment-on-nebes-directive-on-voter-education-csos-voter-education-projects-during-the-6th-national-elections/ ↩︎
  3. https://cecoe.org/download/cecoe-commentary-support-for-civil-society-organizations-engaged-in-the-provisions-of-voter-education-needs-improvement/ ↩︎
CECOE conducted Intellectual Dialogues

CECOE conducted Intellectual Dialogues

The Coalition of Ethiopian Civil Society Organizations for Elections (CECOE), in collaboration with Dialogue Ethiopia, conducted a series of intellectual dialogues themed “Role of Intellectuals on National Issues” on October 14, 21, and 28 in Dire Dawa, Hawassa, and Addis Ababa, respectively. These dialogues brought together 134 intellectuals from 12 universities to engage in inspiring discussions and explore the critical role of intellectuals in determining Ethiopia’s future.

Welcoming speech: CECOE’s Enduring Commitment to Ethiopia’s Democratic Processes

The dialogues commenced with opening remarks by Abera Haile Mariam, the Executive Director of CECOE. In his remarks, he highlighted CECOE’s unwavering commitment to contribute to strengthening democracy in the Ethiopia, process and featured its active involvement in various electoral cycles, including the 6th general election, Sidama, Southwest, South Ethiopia referendum, Wolayita referendum rerun, and other crucial electoral related engagements.

Keynote Speeches: Intellectuals as Agents of Change

Ayalew Zegeye, the Board chairperson of Dialogue Ethiopia, set the stage for the dialogues by emphasizing the paramount importance of intellectuals in addressing national issues. This was followed by insightful keynote speeches delivered by renowned scholars Dr. Yeacob Arsano and Dr. Yonas Ashine from Addis Ababa University. The speakers delved into the journey of Ethiopian intellectuals, their contributions and the challenges they faced during various regimes.

The keynote speakers also underscored the pressing need for intellectuals to make practical commitments that foster sustainable development, uphold constitutionalism, promote modernity, and preserve continuity. The speakers also stated the current intellectuals category falls by two i.e. some are passionate about power and others focus on academics and research. The latter, most of them think that they are mandated solely to do research and laboratory work targeting only being a professor, these are prisoners of their intellectual desires. Due to this, they became monastic intellectuals. The keynote speakers also challenged the intellectual community to actively seek solutions that bring peace, reconciliation, and end to conflicts.

Group Discussions and Presentations: Intellectuals as Problem-Solvers

Following the keynote speeches, participants were divided into groups and tasked with addressing the critical question: “What can and should Ethiopian intellectuals do to change the status quo and positively influence the future of the country?” The groups engaged in lively discussions and presented their findings, covering considerable areas:

  1. Intellectuals as Problem Solvers: Participants underlined the expectation for intellectuals to actively contribute to finding solutions to Ethiopia’s challenges, recognizing their potential to provide insightful analyses and propose effective solutions.
  2. Individual and Collective Initiatives: Intellectuals are encouraged to take proactive steps, both as individuals and groups, to address national issues. This included initiating grassroots movements, engaging in community outreach, and advocating for social change.
  3. Genuine, Neutral, and Creative Engagement: Participants stressed the importance of discharging their responsibilities with authenticity, neutrality, and creativity. Intellectuality was seen as a platform for fostering open dialogue, promoting critical thinking, and embracing diverse perspectives.
  4. Engaging with Government Bodies: Intellectuals were called upon to bridge the gap between academia and government, seeking to alter perspectives about their roles and collaboratively address problems. This involves engaging in constructive dialogue with policymakers, providing expert advice, and participating in policy formulation processes.
  5. Strategic Foresight: Participants recognized the significance of strategic thinking and planning for intellectuals to effectively shape Ethiopia’s future. This encompasses anticipating emerging trends, developing long-term visions, and formulating actionable strategies for sustainable development.
  6. Trust in the Process: Intellectuals are urged to trust the process of change and actively engage in dialogue sessions, recognizing that progress often requires sustained effort and collective action.
  7. Research findings to inform policy decisions: Engaging in research that tackles real-world problems was identified as a crucial task for intellectuals. This includes conducting empirical research, generating data-driven insights, and applying research findings to inform policy decisions.
  8. Reality-Based Suggestions: Participants highlighted the importance of providing suggestions grounded in Ethiopian reality. This comprises understanding the historical, cultural, and socioeconomic factors shaping the country’s challenges.
  9. Developing Empathy: Intellectuals were encouraged to cultivate empathy and consider the needs and perspectives of all Ethiopians. This involves listening to diverse voices, accepting the root causes of societal issues, and advocating for marginalized communities.
  10. Breaking the Silence: Participants emphasized the need for intellectuals to be courageous, risk-takers and break the silence on critical issues. This consists of speaking out against injustice, challenging harmful narratives, and promoting responsible citizenship.

Conclusion and Key Takeaways:

In conclusion, the intellectual dialogues emphasized the importance of making an influence to positively change things by sharing knowledge and experience. It was also recommended that intellectuals engage in discussion forums on national and other related issues on a large scale and with a wide range of issues. Moreover, advocacy, setting agendas, and networking among intellectuals were raised as the essential ways forward.

The key takeaways from these dialogues include:

  • Intellectuals possess the power to positively influence Ethiopia’s political and development trajectory.
  • Proactive and constructive engagement with the government and other stakeholders are crucial for real change.
  • Intellectuals should establish means of networking and communication channels to advocate for solutions to the challenges Ethiopia has faced.  

Call to Action:

CECOE and Dialogue Ethiopia will continue organizing similar forums and call on all Ethiopian intellectuals to join the discussions and actively contribute their fair share to shape a better future for the country.