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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Nigeria: EU to observe the April elections in Nigeria

News National Assembly, Presidential and State House/Governor elections for will take place in Nigeria in April 2011. To assess the electoral processes, the EU will deploy Election Observation Mission (EOM), led by MEP Alojz Peterle, who has been appointed as Chief Observer.

Catherine Ashton, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said the upcoming intense elections calendar in Nigeria was important, not only for Nigeria but also for the region. She added that Nigeria, as a major regional and global player, had an opportunity to show leadership in the democratic transformation of the West African region, and beyond. The invitation the EU received to observe elections indicated, for her, the Nigerian government’s willingness to ensure that the 2011 elections meet international standards. In this context, she said she was delighted that MEP Alojz Peterle, who has a vast experience as a national politician in Slovenia, as OSCE High Level Representative for Central Asia as well as a European Member of Parliament, agreed last week to take on the role of Chief Observer. The core team of experts composing the EOM already settled in the country at the end of February. In his capacity as Chief Observer, Mr Peterle is visiting Abuja on March 8th and 9th to introduce the mission to the Nigerian authorities. Mr Peterle was a former Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs in Slovenia. As an MEP, Mr Peterle is member of the Foreign Affairs Committee. The EOM core team will be joined by 52 long term observers by mid-March, followed by a group of 60 short term observers at the end of the month. In all, the EU EOM will have more than 120 observers in the field. A Delegation of the European Parliament is expected to join the mission for the Presidential election scheduled for April 9th. At the end of the electoral process, the EU EOM will issue a preliminary statement followed by a final report containing its findings and recommendations for the authorities. The EU EOM is independent from any EU institutions and the Member States.

Source :  Press Room - European Commission


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