COMESA will deploy a short term electoral observation mission to the upcoming Rwandan presidential elections set for August 4th.
The team will observe the pre-election, election and post-election activities. The mission will be led by a member of the COMESA Committee of Elders.
Bishop Mary Nkosi from Mnlawi will lead the team to Rwanda and is expected to arrive in Kigali on 27 July 2017.
The observation mission will issue preliminary statements immediately after observing the elections while a comprehensive report will be published after 90 days.
The presidential elections in Rwanda follow the 2015 referendum that unanimously approved a constitutional amendment that allowed President Paul Kagame to run for office in 2017.
August 4th elections are considered important in Rwanda’s socio-economic and political progress.
In the past years, Rwanda has made significant progress in consolidating its political stability, economic growth, and development.
Furthermore, Rwanda has recorded major milestones in consolidating democracy through holding periodic parliamentary and presidential elections as stipulated in its legal framework.
Since 2008, COMESA has continued to support the elections process in Rwanda. COMESA observed the parliamentary elections that were held in 2008, 2013 and the presidential elections held in 2010.
COMESA observes elections in the Member States as a means of promoting and consolidating democracy in the region.
It believes that elections play a pivotal role in societal transformation in the region and provide a footstall for entrenching democratic principles.
Premised on this critical role, Member States have continued holding periodic elections which have heralded a new dawn by signifying steady progress towards deepening and institutionalizing democracy in the 19-member bloc.