General

Communique of the 1096th meeting of the PSC held on 2 August 2022, on the Report of the Chairperson of the AU Commission on Elections in Africa

Adopted by the Peace and Security Council (PSC) of the African Union (AU) at its 1096th meeting held on 2 August 2022, on the Report of the Chairperson of the AU Commission on Elections in Africa.

 

The Peace and Security Council,

 

Recalling all its previous decisions on elections in Africa, particularly, Communiques [PSC/PR/COMM.1062 (2022)] adopted at its 1062nd meeting held on 31 January 2022;

 

Noting the opening remarks made by H.E. Jainaba Jagne, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Republic of The Gambia to the AU as the PSC Chairperson for August 2022 and the Report of the Chairperson of the Commission on Elections in Africa presented by the AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, H.E. Ambassador Bankole Adeoye;

 

Also noting the statement by the representative of the Republic of The Gambia, which held its elections during the first half of 2022; further noting the statements by the representatives of AU Member States that will be organizing their elections in the second half of the year 2022, namely: the Republic of Angola, the Republic of Congo, the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, the Republic of Guinea Bissau, the Kingdom of Lesotho, the Republic of Kenya, the Republic of Sao Tome and Principe, the Republic of Senegal and the Republic of Tunisia;

 

Reaffirming the determination of the AU to continue to promote, deepen and consolidate democracy, good governance, constitutionalism and the rule of law in all Member States, in line with Articles 3 and 4 of the AU Constitutive Act; and also reaffirming the importance of ensuring that the Member States fully adhere to the provisions of the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance;

 

Mindful of the significant contribution of credible, transparent, free and fair elections to conflict prevention, peacebuilding and political stability in Africa, as well as in strengthening democracy in the Member States; and

 

Acting under Article 7 of its Protocol, the Peace and Security Council:

 

Commends the Chairperson of the Commission for the comprehensive Report on Elections in Africa covering the period between January to June 2022, as well as the outlook for the elections to be organized in the period from July to December 2022;

 

Congratulates in particular, the Republic of The Gambia and the Federal Republic of Somalia for the successful organization of peaceful, transparent and credible elections while especially commending the Federal Republic of Somalia, for the successful organization of indirect elections and peaceful transfer of power, in a particularly challenging environment, which resulted in the election of H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamed as the 10th President of the Federal Republic of Somalia and in this regard, pays tribute to the AU Mission in Somalia/ AU Transition Mission in Somalia (AMISOM/ATMIS) for the critical role in providing security to the election process in Somalia ;

 

Takes note of the briefings by the representatives of the Republic of Senegal and the Republic of Tunisia on the successful organization of Parliamentary elections and a constitutional referendum, respectively;

 

Further commends the AU Commission for its support towards the organization of peaceful, credible, transparent, and democratic elections on the Continent through the continued provision of technical assistance to the Member States and the deployment of election observer and preventive diplomacy teams in conflict-prone contexts; and requests the AU Commission to redouble efforts in resource mobilization, to more effectively support electoral processes, including through the timeous and sufficient deployment of election observers in all Member States organizing elections, particularly in countries in political transition, as well as to document and share lessons learnt from AU Election Observer Missions;

 

Commends the Kingdom of Morocco and the Department of Political Affairs, Peace and Security (PAPS) for co-organizing the 1st Specialized Training Workshop for AU Short-Term Election Observers from 13 to 17 June 2022, in Rabat, Kingdom of Morocco, to augment AU’s capacity to observe elections in Africa; and, in this regard, encourages the Commission and the Kingdom of Morocco to continue to regularly co-organize similar training and mobilize the necessary financial and technical resources;

 

Notes with satisfaction, the preparations underway in the Member States that will be organizing elections during the course of the second half of 2022; encourages all stakeholders in the concerned Member States to take necessary measures to create an enabling environment and conducive conditions for the strengthening of democracy through timely, peaceful and inclusive elections in accordance with the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance, as well as to ensure the safety and security of the voters against the COVID-19 pandemic, in line with the AU Guidelines on Elections in Africa in the Context of COVID-19 pandemic and other Public Health Emergencies;

 

Calls upon the Member State that will be organizing elections during the second half of the year, to redouble efforts in mobilizing domestic resources, with a view to ensuring full national ownership of their electoral process and reducing external dependence and its attendant vulnerabilities, while urging political parties and candidates in such elections to place the supreme interest of their countries above all else, accept election outcomes, and to make full use of all available legal channels to settle any election disputes that may arise and to refrain from any recourse to violence;

 

Further encourages all Member States to continue to create conducive conditions that encourage more women, the youth and people living with disabilities to actively participate in political processes, particularly elections, among others by strictly ensuring quota systems and reducing the fees for enlisting election candidature, in line with the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance, the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights (The Banjul Charter), the Protocol to African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa (Maputo Protocol), as well as the Africa Youth Charter;

 

Notes with satisfaction the evolving culture of peaceful and democratic elections that continues to be deepened and consolidated across Africa as evidenced by the regularity of national elections, as well as the growing trend of peaceful transfer of power in the AU Member States, thanks to the effective management of elections by national election management bodies;

 

Welcomes the revitalization of the Association of African Electoral Authorities (AAEA) and underscores the need for ensuring universal representation of the whole Continent in its Executive Committee, while calling on the AU Commission to scale up technical assistance to the Association;

 

Urges the AU Commission to ensure gender parity and youth inclusion in AU Election Observation Missions (AUEOMs); reiterates the request for the AU Commission to organize an annual forum for national elections management bodies as a platform for sharing experiences, lessons and best practices, with a view to further improving electoral processes in the Member States;

 

Drawing inspiration from the Malabo Declaration and Decisions adopted by the 16th Extraordinary Session of the AU Assembly of Heads of States and Government on Terrorism and Unconstitutional Changes of Government, held in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, on 28 May 2022, reaffirms deep concern over the impact of Unconstitutional Changes of Government, terrorism and violent extremism, as well as the nefarious activities of non-state armed groups on governance, and democracy, and in particular, the successful organization of elections in the Member States;

 

Underscores the need for the AU Commission to continue to further enhance synergies with the Regional Economic Communities and Regional Mechanisms, in inculcating and entrenching the culture of peace, democracy, political pluralism, constructive management of diversity and tolerance in the Continent, particularly in relation to elections;

 

Underlines the importance for the Member States to continue to uphold constitutionalism and deepen and consolidate their democratic culture, including by building strong and independent national institutions, particularly those involved in the management of electoral processes, with a view to preventing election-related conflicts and crisis situations;

 

Emphasizes the important role of a vibrant civil society and responsible media, both print and electronic, in promoting peaceful and credible elections and, in this regard, encourages these entities to always contribute more positively towards promoting the integrity and credibility of elections and maintenance of peace and stability in the Member States, among others, by promoting civic education and factually informing the public, as well as refraining from inflammatory reporting and activities that may incite violence;

 

Underlines the importance of universalization of signature, ratification and domestication of the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance by all Member States; congratulates those Member States which have already signed and ratified the Charter and encourages those that have not yet done so to also consider doing the same without further delays; and

 

Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

 

 

Source: African Union

Author Since: Dec 08, 2021

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