press statement
EISA Observer Mission 2004 Botswana Elections

Twenty two observers from the SADC region are leaving for various parts of Botswana, to start monitoring the Parliamentary and Local Government Elections, to be held this Saturday, October 30.

The mission is made up of academics, civil society organizations, members of parliament and political parties. The mission was put together by EISA, an NGO operating in SADC countries. EISA's mission is to promote credible elections and democratic governance in Africa. Its headquarters are in Johannesburg, with regional offices in Mozambique, Angola and the DRC.

The EISA Observer Mission in Botswana is led by the Honourable Mme Ntlhoi Motsamai, the speaker of the National Assembly of Lesotho.

The overall objective of this Mission is in line with EISA's vision of promoting credible elections and democratic governance in Africa. Following an invitation extended by the Botswana Government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation dated 24 September 2004, EISA established a mission to observe the 2004 Parliamentary and Local Elections in Botswana.

Specific objectives for this particular Mission include the following:

  • To assess whether conditions exist for the conduct of elections that reflect the will of the people of Botswana;
  • To assess whether the elections are conducted in accordance with the electoral legislative framework of Botswana.
  • To assess whether the elections meet the benchmarks set out in the Principles for Election Management, Monitoring and Observation in the SADC Region (PEMMO), developed under the auspices of EISA and the Electoral Commissions Forum (ECF) of SADC countries.
    PEMMO is the result of 3 years of work by the ECF and EISA. This initiative led to the adoption of election principles which are serving as benchmarks in the conduct and assessment of elections in the SADC region. It should be recalled that these principles were adopted on 6 November 2003 in Johannesburg, South Africa, and resulted from a process of consultation with all electoral commissions in the SADC region as well as CSOs who work in the field of elections. PEMMO gives the region an objective basis in terms of which to conduct and assess elections. PEMMO has been applied for the assessment of the South African and Malawian elections held in April and May 2004 respectively.

EISA is a regional non-governmental organisation established in 1996. Its mission is to strengthen electoral processes, good governance, human rights and democratic values in the SADC region and beyond through research, capacity building, advocacy and other targeted interventions. EISA works with electoral commissions, political parties, civil society organisations and other institutions operating in the democracy and governance fields in Africa.