ECONEC moves to reduce cost of elections in West Africa

Abuja, Nigeria (PANA) - The ECOWAS Network of Electoral Commissions (ECONEC) is taking steps to
encourage reduction of the cost of elections, and professional reporting of electoral processes through
regional media training to improve the coverage of elections with integrity in the region.

“Elections are not only very expensive to run, but have also become a source of avoidable political
conflicts in our region, so ECONEC is taking steps to address these challenges in a proactive
manner,” said Prof Mahmood Yakubu, President of ECONEC governing board and Chair of the
Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of Nigeria.

Yakubu was presiding over a meeting of ECONEC Secretariat staff in Abuja, which was also attended
by other senior INEC officials.

The ECONEC strategy, discussed during the meeting, included a planned launch of a Study on the
Cost of Elections in West Africa. The findings would be used to sensitise and mobilise stakeholders
on the need to scale down the spiralling cost of election administration; encourage pooling of
resources by Election Management Bodies (EMBs), and strengthening transparency and prudent use
of available resources.

ECONEC also plans a series of regional training workshops for the media to build a critical mass of
journalists equipped with the requisite knowledge and skills for reporting elections according to
internationally accepted standards.

The ECOWAS Election Observation Mission to Liberia for the country’s first round presidential and
legislative elections on 10 October 2017 included officials from the ECONEC secretariat. The
presidential run-off is now scheduled for 26 December.

In the coming year, ECONEC plans more Needs Assessment and Solidarity missions to other member
countries planning elections, and follow-up missions for the implementation of ECOWAS Election
Observation missions’ reports/recommendations.
-0- PANA PR/AR 14Dec2017

14 december 2017 17:32:57

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