Deputy Chief Observer Dimitra Ioannou bid farewell to 32 long-term observers (LTOs), who departed this morning from the European Union Election Observation Mission ( EU EOM) headquarters in Lusaka to their respective areas of observation across all ten provinces in Zambia.
“Our role is to carry out a comprehensive observation of the entire electoral process in all districts of Zambia. In addition to 11 analysts based in Lusaka, 32 long-term observers are deploying to all 10 provinces, helping us to collect reliable information from across Zambia”, said Dimitra Ioannou, Deputy Chief Observer at the LTOs’ departure.
“In accordance with the EU standard observation methodology, it is important to have a long-term, Zambia-wide approach enabling a full and comprehensive analysis”.
Observers will meet with local and electoral officials, representatives from political parties and candidates, the judiciary, civil society organisations and the media; their observation will focus on campaign activities, the election coverage of the media and social media, electoral preparations and the preparations for polling.
On election day, the analysts and 32 long-term observers will be joined by locally recruited short-term observers from different EU member states as well as Norway, bringing the mission likely to a total strength of around 70.
The EU Election Observation Mission led by Chief Observer Maria Arena, Member of the European Parliament from Belgium, was established on 30 June 2021 to observe the general elections.
All EU EOM observers are bound by a code of conduct, and ethical guidelines, which require strict neutrality and impartiality. All EU EOM observers will respect the laws of Zambia and adhere to the Covid-19 regulations issued by the Ministry of Health of Zambia including the wearing of facemasks correctly and consistently, and maintaining physical distance.
Shortly after election day, the mission will issue a Preliminary Statement of their findings at a press conference in Lusaka. A Final Report, including recommendations for future electoral processes, will be presented at a later stage, after the conclusion of the entire electoral process.