The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), a regional bloc composed of eight countries in East Africa, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Democratic Institute on Friday, October 13. The new agreement fortifies the existing relationship between the two organizations and will enhance joint efforts to consolidate democratic practices in the IGAD member states: Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Somalia, South Sudan, and Uganda.
NDI was pleased to support the Code for All Network at their annual Code for All Summit, which took place in Taipei, Taiwan, at the margins of Taiwan’s CivicTech Festival.
Code for All is an international network of organizations who believe that digital technology opens new channels for citizens to more meaningfully engage in the public sphere and have a positive impact on their communities.
The continued expansion of internet use in Kyrgyzstan has created new opportunities for young people to meaningfully participate in politics. Looking to take advantage of this new avenue for political participation, NDI partnered with Radio Azattyk (the Kyrgyzstani affiliate of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty) to produce a weekly livestreamed political discussion show, “Azattyk Club.” The platform is currently the only livestreamed political show in Kyrgyzstan.
On August 23, 2017 NDI received a letter from Cambodia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation ordering the Institute to close its office and expelling its international staff from the country. The government’s action against NDI was part of a larger and intense campaign against independent media, the political opposition and civil society. The crackdowns are taking place in the lead-up to the July 2018 elections, which are expected to be closely contested.
Liberia is in transition, celebrating more than a decade of peace since the end of its civil war in 2003 and surviving the Ebola crisis. The country is moving past a focus on political stability and towards building a resilient democracy that delivers for its people. After electing Africa’s first woman head of state, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, in 2005, Liberians face another historic election on October 10, 2017: the first peaceful transfer of power between two democratically elected governments.
Nicaragua’s democratic institutions have eroded substantially over the past decade, to the degree that many Nicaraguan youth do not see viable options for making change in their communities or country through politics. Through grassroots organizing, a group of Nicaraguan youth have found ways to exercise their right to hold elected officials accountable and to secure action to bring about improvements in their communities.
On July 26, 2017, Tunisia’s Assembly of People’s Representatives (ARP) unanimously passed groundbreaking legislation on the Elimination of Violence against Women. After years of debate and deliberation, the new law strengthens penalties against those who commit violence against women, both in the privacy of their home or in public.
Following its groundbreaking work in 2015 as the first-ever citizen monitoring group registered in Burma/Myanmar, the People’s Alliance for Credible Elections (PACE) emerged as one of the country’s leading election monitoring organizations. Since then, PACE has continued to play a prominent role in promoting electoral integrity during parliamentary by-elections and municipal polls which further consolidated the country’s democratic transition. Having now mastered its own methodology, PACE has begun to mentor other Myanmar organizations to do the same.