Wednesday, 23 June

African election observers dialogue on parallel vote tabulation

Voter casting her ballot

Some eleven citizen observer groups from nine African countries are holding a virtual dialogue on the evolving role of the Parallel Vote Tabulations (PVT) in ensuring credible elections across the continent. 

It started on 18 May and billed to end on May 20, 2021. 

The goal of the meeting is to analyse new threats to elections in Africa and formulate citizen observer responses building on the PVT to continue to promote electoral integrity. 

The virtual meeting brings together citizen observer groups from Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Tunisia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe all of whom have deep experience using the PVT to provide independent verification of election results. 

PVTs provide the most accurate and timely information on the conduct of voting and counting and is the only methodology that can provide an independent assessment of the accuracy of election results. 

The citizen observer groups will come together for a series of virtual dialogues to share experiences with systematic election observation and chart a path forward for enhancing the role of the PVT in bolstering electoral accountability across the continent. 

The groups will issue a joint statement highlighting key outcomes following the dialogue series. 

Participating in the virtual dialogue are leaders from: 

● Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace (CCJP) of Malawi;

● Christian Churches Monitoring Group (CCMG) of Zambia;

● Coalition of Domestic Election Observers/Center for Democratic Development

(CODEO/CDD-Ghana) of Ghana;

● Elections Observation Group (ELOG) of Kenya;

● Election Resource Centre (ERC) of Zimbabwe;

● Indigo of Côte d’Ivoire;

● Mourakiboun of Tunisia;

● National Election Watch (NEW) of Sierra Leone;

● Public Affairs Committee (PAC) of Malawi;

● Yiaga Africa of Nigeria; and

● Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) of Zimbabwe 

Since the first PVT in Africa in the 1990s, citizen observers from these nine countries have conducted over 25 national PVTs. 

These systematic citizen efforts have successfully deterred election manipulation, exposed shortcoming in elections, built confidence in electoral processes where warranted, and provided a platform for advocacy for necessary reforms to enhance electoral integrity. 

The virtual dialogue is being convened by CODEO/CDD-Ghana and Yiaga Africa with support from the National Democratic Institute (NDI).