interim statement
EISA Observer Mission to the 2004 Mozambican Presidential and Parliamentary Elections (continued)

Mozambique elections 2004

5.1 Election Update

As part of its pre-election assessment, EISA engaged a team of Mozambique-based researchers to produce the Election Update 2004: Mozambique. EISA used this method of information gathering to keep members of the mission and other stakeholders up to date with the electoral process as it evolved in the run up to Election Day. The post election edition of the Election Update will be produced after the completion of the entire electoral process.

5.2 Observer Briefing and Related Presentations

The members of the mission attended a one and a half day briefing session in Maputo where they were introduced to the context in which the election was being held as well as the tools of assessment to be used.

The briefing was also addressed by key Mozambican election stakeholders including CSOs, political parties and the Technical Secretariat for Electoral Administration (STAE). The mission was also represented at the demonstration of software that was held by STAE at Saturday 27 November 2004.

5.3 Stakeholder Meetings and Political Party Rallies

Members of the Mission held meetings with various electoral stakeholders, including representatives of the CNE, political parties, civil society organisations, the media and academics. The Mission also met domestic observers from the Electoral Observatory and the Institute of Civic Education (FECIV), church groups and other international observer teams. Meetings were held at both national and provincial levels. These meetings provided useful insight into the different key stakeholders' assessment of the process as well as the general mood in the country as the polls drew near.

Our teams also attended political party rallies in the various parts of the country where they were deployed.

5.4 Observation of Voting and Counting

The members of the Mission were deployed in the field from 28 November 2004 where they held further meetings with election stakeholders. The mission observed the voting on 1 - 2 December as well as the counting at the polling stations. In total, the mission covered 330 polling stations in 50 districts.

Through the EISA-Mozambique Office in Maputo, EISA will continue to follow the process to its completion, including the tabulation and announcement of results.

6. Principles for Election Management Monitoring and Observation in the SADC Region (PEMMO)

The EISA Observer Mission's assessment of the Mozambique 2004 elections is based on the Principles for Election Management, Monitoring and Observation in the SADC Region (PEMMO). The principles are benchmarks against which an election can be measured from an objective basis to assess whether or not it is free and fair. PEMMO was developed by EISA in partnership with the Electoral Commissions Forum of SADC countries, (ECF) which comprises all the election management bodies in the SADC region. These principles are the result of extensive research and region-wide consultation with electoral stakeholders including CSOs and were designed to provide guiding principles for the administration of elections in the region.

The principles cover the whole electoral process, including the period before, during and after the poll. Furthermore, they constitute a useful tool in the post-election review and for electoral reforms. For observers, PEMMO also outlines guidelines on the expected behaviour of observers for the enhanced credibility of observer groups.

Since its adoption at a regional conference on 6 November 2003 in Johannesburg, PEMMO has been successfully used to assess the elections held earlier this year in South Africa, Malawi, Botswana and Namibia.