1 March 2018

Nigeria: Jonathan Leads Observer Mission for Sierra Leone Elections

Sierra Leoneans take to the polls in Freetown, the capital of the West African nation.

Nigeria's former President, Goodluck Jonathan, will lead a team of observers to Sierra Leone's general elections scheduled to take place on March 7.

Mr. Jonathan is scheduled to leave for Freetown on Friday as leader of the Election Observation Mission of the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA).

A statement issued by the ex-president's spokesman, Ikechukwu Eze, said Mr. Jonathan would be leading the mission which has observers drawn from civil society organisations and election management bodies from across the continent.

It said the former president is pleased to be part of the process "in support of a peaceful and transparent election in Sierra Leone."

EISA is a not-for-profit election-focused organisation that is working with national, regional, Pan-African and global partners throughout the African continent. It is based in South Africa with field offices across the continent and has supported or observed over 100 electoral and political processes in Africa.

A statement from EISA notes that the mission's assignment is in line with the organisation's "vision of an African continent where democratic governance, human rights and citizen participation are upheld in a peaceful environment."

In this regard, "EISA gives focus to the crucial role that election observation plays in promoting the transparency of electoral processes and lesson learning among nations. Consequently, EISA believes that international observers play a crucially supportive role in increasing public confidence and enhancing the credibility of the electoral process."

Its work extends beyond electoral support to include other democracy and governance fields such as political party support, legislative strengthening and civil society engagement of the African Peer Review Mechanism. EISA has current and past field offices in countries like Burundi, Central African Republic (CAR), Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Gabon, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan, Zambia and Zimbabwe. This reflects its broader geographical mandate and coverage.


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