Thursday, January 29, 2015 3:23 pm
Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has approved the deployment of an AU election observation mission (AUEOM) to Nigeria as the west African nation prepares for its general elections in February.
According to a statement from AU on Thursday, prior to the arrival of the short-term observers, AU will deploy a team of 15 electoral experts as long-term observers, who will remain in the country until March 11 to observe all the critical stages of the electoral process.
The 15 long-term observers are expected to be joined by 50 short-term observers from AU member states to follow the electoral process and to meet with government and electoral officials, candidates and political parties, civil society representatives and media.
“The AUEOM’s assessment of the electoral process is independent. Its purpose is to offer an impartial assessment of the elections and their compliance with the Federal Republic of Nigeria’s international and regional commitments with regard to democratic elections, as well as with laws governing elections in the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” said the statement.
AUEOM has a mandate to observe and report on the electoral process in Nigeria and will operate in accordance with relevant AU instruments on democracy and elections, it said.
The mission will issue its preliminary findings and conclusions shortly after the election day.
A final report with recommendations for future improvement of elections in Nigeria will be published within two months after the elections, according to the statement.