Serious measures have been taken since the inauguration of the Commission to establish links with various Development Partners who have expressed interest to work with it on electoral issues in pursuit of its primary objective of conducting free, fair and credible elections.
The Commission has enjoyed tremendous support from many Development Partners in both the pre and post election periods. Indeed, the goodwill has been overwhelming. The cooperation between the Commission and Development Partners has been built on a number of principles, namely:
- The Commission has sought in these partnerships to ensure that it retains control over the overall purpose of support received. In this regard, the Commission has always tried to develop the agenda and subsequently get the support of partners
- The Commission encourages its partners to co-sponsor activities, rather than transfer funds to the Commission.
- Support of Development Partners serves to augment the work of the Commission, particularly in areas where there may be budgetary shortfall or where no budgetary outlays have been made initially by the Commission.
- The Commission sought to ensure flexibility in the support offered by Development Partners. This makes it possible for funds to be applied to urgent, unanticipated needs.
- Our activities with Development Partners have sought to emphasize the long time strategic interests of the Commission, while also filling immediate needs.
CLASSIFICATION OF DEVELOPMENT PARTNERS
Three principal genres of Development Partners have worked with INEC in the past two years namely, Embassies and High Commissions, Multilateral Development Agencies, as well as Foundations. Table 1 summarizes these categories.
Classification of INEC’s Development Partners
B) Mutilateral Development Agencies
C) Foundations and other Agencies
AREAS OF SUPPORT
The bulk support from Development Partners are in the four main areas highlighted below:
- They offer Technical Assistance to the Commission in diverse fields. These include providing consultants who advise the Commission on Voter Registration, Voter Education, Media Work, Transmission of Results and Election Management generally.
- The Commission receives support for training. Several workshops and training are funded, including BRIDGE Training.
- Many of the Development Partners support experience sharing between the Commission, Experts and Election Management Bodies.
- The Commission also receives support from Development Partners in its reviews of major electoral activities including the registration of voters and general elections.
The main goal of these collaborations between the Commission and the Development Partners is to contribute to the strengthening of institutions and diffusion of democratic principles within a framework of mutual respect, harmony and co-responsibility.