DI’s new Djibouti Elections and Political Processes project was officially launched on Monday July 19, 2010 at the U.S. Embassy in Djibouti. In preparation for the spring 2011 Presidential and Regional Council elections, this $2.2 million dollar project will focus on five strategic areas:
• building electoral management;
• conducting voter education and participation;
• supporting the Electoral Commission (la Commission Electorale Nationale Independante –CENI) in its role to oversee the electoral process;
• enhancing political dialogue among electoral contestants and strengthening political parties; and
• deploying international observers before, during and after the elections.
The project goals are based on the objectives included in a bi-lateral assistance agreement signed in September, 2009 between the United States Government and the Republic of Djibouti that includes promotion of democracy and good governance. Read the more about the launch event after the jump.
Event attendees included James C. Swan, U.S. Ambassador in Djibouti, and Rachid Hassan Saban, the Director of the Prime Minister’s cabinet of the Government of Djibouti, along with representatives of the Presidency, the Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry of Interior, political parties, civil society, the previous Electoral Commission (la Commission Electorale Nationale Independante –CENI), and regional governments as well as the media.
In remarks made during the ceremony today, Ambassador Swan commented, “We look forward to working with the government and people of Djibouti to support further democratic openness and competition. Our goal is to ensure that recent democratic reforms in Djibouti carry forward to free and fair elections in 2011. Further gains in democracy and good governance will reinforce Djibouti’s deserved reputation as a pocket of relative peace and stability in the Horn of Africa region.”
Speaking on behalf of the Republic of Djibouti, Rachid Hassan Saban stated that, “The Government of Djibouti supports this project and looks forward to working in partnership with the U.S. Government on its implementation.”
For the official USAID Press Release