The ECF-SADC undertook pre-election visits to countries holding elections this year -2023 namely Eswatini, Zimbabwe and DRC. The Pre-Assessment Mission visits to the Kingdom of Eswatini and Zimbabwe took place on 14-20 May and 22-26 May 2023 respectively. The DRC Mission is anticipated for 11-17 June 2023. The election dates for all three countries have been proclaimed as follows: Zimbabwe 23rd August, Eswatini 29th September and DRC 20th December 2023.
The Mission to Eswatini was Led by Commissioner Wendy Didon of Electoral Commissions of Seychelles, the Mission to Zimbabwe was led by Mr Mphasa Mokhochane, Chairperson of IEC Lesotho and the Mission to the DRC will be led by Hon Justice Dr. Kachale, Chairperson of Malawi Electoral Commission. Participating member commissions as delegates were Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia.
It is a long-standing tradition in the ECF-SADC to embark on a pre-Assessment Mission (PAM) to any member Commission whenever there are elections in the country where the said commission operates. The Pre Assessment Mission (PAM) is conducted as part of ECF- SADC observation strategy and it is held in the spirit of togetherness and support for member commissions, with the main purpose being to assess the state of preparedness of Electoral Commissions in this case ZEC , EBC and CENI, to hold credible elections in line with the Principles for Election Management, Monitoring and Observation in the SADC region (PEMMO) which is currently under review, and the Revised SADC Principles Governing Democratic Elections in the SADC region.
Every Pre-Assessment Mission conducted by ECF-SADC, offers the opportunity to delegates to peer review each other regarding the state of preparedness ahead of elections, to consult with electoral stakeholders on their role and the electoral environment, and to assess the extent to which the recommendations from previous election reports have been implemented.
Reports and recommendations from these Missions will inform the ECF-SADC interventions and the possible technical support that it may render to the member commissions conducting elections.