SRSG Viegas on the ground to witness ongoing voter registration
"I am the UN SG Representative here in Guinea-Bissau. As you know we were asked to support the elections. So, I came here to see by myself if everything is going well, how is the registration process going,” he told them. He was presented how the whole process works amidst people standing in queues or sitting, waiting to be registered.
“As you see we record the 10 finger prints and take a photo. Everything is going well,” a voter registration officer said. For his part, Adi, a new potential voter, acknowledged that, “it is the first time I register and I will vote for the first time. I know for whom I am going to vote. I hope they can take us out of this poverty.”
SRSG’s visit follows those UNIOGBIS’ electoral team made last week to some voter registration sites in Bissau in addition to the continued assistance to the Technical Support Office to the Electoral Process (GTAPE) with regard to deployment planning for voter registration and other logistics concerns.
Also, as part of the UN’s support to the electoral process, the UNDP-managed Basket Fund has continued to support GTAPE and the National Electoral Commission (CNE) financially and technically. UNDP assisted GTAPE in developing a deployment plan for voters’ registration in 10 countries in the diaspora (Senegal, Mauritania, Cape Verde, Guinea Conakry, Gambia, United Kingdom, Luxembourg, Portugal, Spain and France).
Similarly, UNDP provided technical and financial assistance to the CNE to facilitate the supervision of voters’ registration nationwide and in the diaspora.
Assessing the two first weeks recently, government officials said that around 120,000 people were registered. The limited number of registration kits (150) is the main cause of the slow pace of the process. The voter registration targeting 900.000 potential voters began on 20 September and will end on 20 October.
In its last February Resolution 2404, the Security Council requested UNIOGBIS to “support, through good offices the electoral process to ensure inclusive, free and credible legislative elections in 2018 within the legally mandated time frame”.