TWO-DAY CONFERENCE “2016 LOCAL ELECTIONS – LESSONS LEARNED”
Sarajevo, February 23, 2017 – The two-day conference “2016 Local Elections – Lessons learned” started today at Ilidža, Sarajevo. Conference is organized by the BiH CEC with the support of the Council of Europe, while logistical support is provided by the Association of Election Officials in BiH. The conference has gathered 180 participants – representatives of municipal/city election commissions from 143 municipalities/cities in BiH, election experts, both local and international, including representatives from the Council of Europe, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, Association of European Election Officials (ACEEEO), political parties, international organizations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, local and international NGOs, and the academic community.
Objective of the Conference “Local Elections 2016 – Lessons Learned” is an analysis of the local elections 2016 in Bosnia and Herzegovina, summarizing conclusions and formulation of proposal for improvement of the entire election process.
Besides plenary session there are workshops that will enable direct interaction between the conference participants. The main goal of the discussion is to identify the challenges and main obstacles, exchange of experience and practice, and to define concrete activities for improvement of thematic areas such as “Participation of political subjects in the elections”, “Legal framework and protection of BiH Election Law”, and “Effectiveness and transparency of election administration”.
The keynote speakers of the plenary sessions were dr. Irena Hadžiabdić, president of the BiH CEC, H.E. Ambassador Drahoslav Štefánek, Head of the Office of Council of Europe in BiH, Mr. Šefik Džaferović, Speaker of the House of Representatives of the BiH PA and Mr. Francois Friederich, head of the Electoral Assistance and Census Division of the General Directorate for Democracy of Council of Europe.
Moderators of the workshops at the conference were Mr. Adis Arapović (Centers for Civil Initiatives, project manager), Mr. Robert Vidović (House of Peoples of BiH PA, Secretary of the Commission for finance and budget and Prof. dr. Milan Tomić (Election Commission of Brčko District of BiH, member).
Conference participants will finalize the conclusions of thematic workshop debates, which will underline key issues and potential solutions, as well as good practice examples that could be applied in BiH context. In its regular annual report on implementation of the laws within its competence, the Central Election Commission BiH will summarize its recommendations to the Parliamentary Assembly BiH for further improvement of the election legislation and other laws within its competence, and the conclusions of the Conference “Local Elections 2016 – Lessons Learned” will present a good foundation for formulation of recommendations based on experience and practice.