New Delhi: India and Libya on 30th November signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) here in New Delhi, for cooperation in the field of election management and administration, with Libyan Election Commission seeking training and electoral assistance from the Election Commission of India.
The MoU was signed by the Chief Election Commissioner of India, Mr. V.S. Sampath and the Deputy Chairman of the High National Election Commission of Libya, Mr. Najeeb Abdessalam Mohammed Arrabiti. Election Commissioners from India, Mr. H. S. Brahma and Dr. Naseem Zaidi; Election Commissioners from Libya, Mr. Altaher Abd Allah Graf, Mr. Mohammed Alsadig Abo Hedma and Mr. Masud Amr Alnami; diplomats and senior officials of the Election Commission of India and Government of India were present at the signing ceremony.
The major aims of the MoU are: promotion of exchanges of knowledge and experience in electoral processes; exchange of information, materials, expertise and training of personnel; production and distribution of materials pertaining to electoral systems, voting technology, voters’ education and awareness, and participation of women and minorities in electoral process.
Mr. Sampath described the MoU as an appropriate framework for strengthening and improving mutual collaboration between ECI and the newly constituted Commission in Libya. He expressed the confidence that the MoU would facilitate sharing of best practices, skills and experiences between the two institutions for mutual benefit. He praised the HNEC for successfully conducting the July 2012 elections to the Libyan Assembly in a difficult and challenging environment. He expressed ECI’s readiness to extend all technical and training support needed by the HNEC so that it could fulfill its responsibility for establishing a strong and durable democratic process in Libya.
Mr. Arrabiti praised the expertise and experience gained by ECI in conducting the largest elections in the world in a peaceful, transparent and credible manner. He also stated that this MoU is an important step in mutual cooperation and would facilitate sharing of experience and skills. At their request, the Libyan delegation was given a detailed briefing on the Indian electoral system and management practices, and a demonstration on the working of the Electronic Voting Machine. Mr. Arrabiti requested for training facilities for the new election officials of Libya through mutual visits in near future, and by making use of ECI’s India Institute of Democracy and Election Management (IIIDEM). HNEC would shortly communicate its training requirements to ECI. Election Commissioners Shri H. S. Brahma and Dr. Nasim Zaidi and the Libyan Election Commissioners also spoke on the occasion. The four-member Libyan delegation earlier held consultations with the Indian Commission on challenges faced in the developing democratic set-up in Libya. They visited the IIIDEM and witnessed the training activities.
Election Commission of India has so far signed sixteen MOUs with Election Management Bodies and international organizations across the world. Some of the MoU signed recently are with Egypt, Venezuela, Republic of Korea and UNDP.