UK supports Dialogue Fiji in project to increase confidence in elections

 Dialogue Fiji will be working with civil society organisations and journalists to enhance public understanding and confidence in Fiji’s upcoming 2022 General Election. 

Facilitated via funding from the British High Commission, the project aims to support civil society organisations and other stakeholders’ understanding of electoral processes, legal frameworks, roles of election stakeholders, prevailing international standards, norms and practices relating to elections. 

The International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) will also be a co-implementer in the project and provide expertise in electoral capacity building and training. 

The project will support research and publications to advance evidence-based recommendations for the consideration of policymakers, legislators and electoral bodies. It will create avenues for engagement between civil society organisations and election stakeholders, and support the strengthening of state institutions. 

Media plays an important role in elections and there are many up-and-coming journalists in this field. The training under this partnership aims to provide support to both journalists and civil society organisations. 

British High Commissioner to Fiji, George Edgar said, “We are glad to support this project, which aims to strengthen public understanding and participation in coming elections. Civil society and the media have an important role to play in the democratic process”. 

In addition, this project will include a Women-in-Politics Forum which aims to create space to give women a voice to deliberate issues impacting on women’s participation in elections in Fiji. 

Nilesh Lal, Executive Director, Dialogue Fiji said, “Public trust and confidence in electoral processes is a critical factor for acceptance of electoral outcomes, political stability and peace prospects”. 

“The project will use a multifaceted approach to achieve this and will work with a diverse range of election stakeholders, political parties, election management bodies, civil society organisations, journalists, academia and voters at different levels to increase understanding of the electoral framework and processes, including its rationale, and generate public discourse on strengthening the regulatory framework and conduct of elections”. 

“We are very thankful to the UK government for funding this project. This funding comes at an opportune time as we begin our election related work before the next general elections in 2022”. 

Adhy Aman, Country Programme Manager for Fiji, International IDEA commented, “As the only intergovernmental organisation with the sole mandate of supporting sustainable democracy worldwide, the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) is grateful of the opportunity provided by the British people and our long-time partner, Dialogue Fiji, to take further part in contributing towards consolidation of democracy in Fiji. We look forward to co-implementing this important joint-venture as we develop civil societal capacities on electoral matters together.” 

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