IFES Trains New Tunisia Court of Accounts Judges on Political Finance
In partnership with the Tunisia Court of Accounts, IFES recently trained 20 junior judges – some of whom will control the funding of future elections – on political finance. The three-day interactive training took place in Tunis, from November 27 to December 2, tackling political finance and its management.
The session helped participants understand key concepts of managing campaign finance and ways to control election campaign finance. During the session, judges also developed actionable recommendations to improve the Court of Accounts procedures manual and operations.
During the workshop’s inaugural speech, Court of Accounts President Abdelkader Zgoulli focused on the importance of the court in controlling money in politics. He noted that the court recently increased its staff to allow for faster, more efficient control. Zgoulli underlined the importance of IFES’ assistance in helping judges gain a broader perspective on political finance through study visits and trainings.
IFES Country Director Nicolas Kaczorowski emphasized the role of IFES in supporting Tunisian democracy. He highlighted IFES’ approach of listening to the needs of institutions and responding promptly and thoughtfully. He also welcomed a strong, fruitful partnership with the court, reinforcing that money in politics is a vital topic, as political parties need funds to fulfill democratic functions.
Training explored all aspects of political finance. The first day covered key concepts and potential obstacles. This session also focused on control mechanisms to ensure transparency and accountability.
The second day tackled practical issues, such as principles of campaign accounting; reviewing expenditures; control mechanisms for income and spending; and assessing the integrity of campaign accounts.
During the last day, participants were divided into two working groups to prepare recommendations to enhance the procedures manual currently used by the Court of Accounts, which was issued in 2011. Participants presented recommendations that will be used by the working group responsible for refining the manual. IFES will hold consultation on possible improvements in 2014.
This workshop was funded by the United Kingdom Embassy under the Arab Partnership Fund.