Democracy and elections
The Commonwealth promotes political dialogue, fostering greater democratic space for political and civil actors, and strengthening democratic institutions. Books in this area support the Commonwealth’s fundamental values and principles.
A Handbook for Gender-Inclusive Elections in Commonwealth Africa: Achieving 50:50 by 2030
A Handbook for Gender-Inclusive Elections in Commonwealth Africa: Achieving 50:50 by 2030 reviews the systems, legislation and best practice that will need to be implemented and effectively monitored to get more women into politics and help to realise Sustainable Development Goal 5 – achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.
Election Management: A Compendium of Commonwealth Good Practice
Election Management: A Compendium of Commonwealth Good Practice is a guide for policy-makers and EMBs to the democratic values, principles and practices of the Commonwealth. It will assist governments, political parties and civil society to understand the role, functions and responsibilities of those tasked with delivering credible elections.
Uganda General Elections, 18 February 2016
The report of the Commonwealth Observer Group for Uganda presidential election held on 18 February 2016, chaired by former president of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo. The group concluded that Uganda has fallen well short of meeting many of the key democratic benchmarks for the conduct of credible elections.
Namibia Presidential and National Assembly Elections, 28 November 2014
The 2014 Namibia elections were historic as they were the first elections in Africa to use entirely electronic voting. The team found that, despite a number of technical glitches, which caused significant delays in the overall voting process, the elections were competitive, met key democratic benchmarks and were generally well administered.
Sri Lanka Presidential Election, 8 January 2015
These were important elections in Sri Lanka as an incumbent president was seeking an unprecedented third term in office under a recent constitutional amendment. The group found that the outcome election reflected the will of the people of Sri Lanka, but the electoral contest did not comply with all the key benchmarks for democratic elections.
Solomon Islands General Elections, 19 November 2014
The 2014 election was significant as it was the first general election held after the withdrawal of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands. The group found that the election demonstrated commitment to democratic values and principles, although it noted that political representation of women remained disappointingly low.
Botswana General Elections, 24 October 2014
The Commonwealth Expert Team found that the elections were peaceful, credible and transparent and exemplified Botswana’s commitment to democratic values and principles. They made a number of recommendations to help strengthen the process further.
Malawi Tripartite Elections, 20 May 2014
The report of the Commonwealth Observer Group for Malawi tripartite elections held on 20 May 2014. The mission was chaired by Lt Gen Mompati Sebogodi Merafhe, former Vice-President of Botswana and was comprised of 11 members in total.
Antigua and Barbuda General Election, 12 June 2014
The 2014 general election was conducted in a peaceful, credible and transparent manner. Voter turnout was high and the Mission commended the Electoral Commission on its management of the entire electoral process. The report makes a number of recommendations for consideration ahead of the next elections.
South African National and Provincial Elections, 7 May 2014
The report of the Commonwealth Observer Mission for South Africa’s national and provincial elections held on 7 May 2014. These were significant elections as they were the first elections in which ‘born frees’ (those born in or after 1994) could vote and the first to be held since the passing of Nelson Mandela.
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