Angola: Assessment of Proposed Voter Registration Process and Elections in Angola

INTRODUCTION

1. This report was prepared following a 10 day visit to Angola (4th to 15th November, 1991). The report is divided into 5 sections. The Introduction (Section One); notes of meetings and discussions; summary of information and details of the work undertaken in the 3 days after arrival (Section Two); Seminar Programme work (Section Three); summary of proceedings at the Seminar (Section Four); and an overview of the position (Section Five).

I went to Angola as a member of a three person UN Team led by Mr. Horacia Boneo who has a wealth of experience on registration and election matters following responsibility for UN work on elections in Nicaragua, Haiti and Cambodia. The other member of the UN team was Maria Grossi who was also involved in the Nicaragua and Haiti elections. I also represented the interests of IFES.

During the assignment I worked closely with Mr. Nigel Buttler who was the UK Government representative at the Seminar. This arrangement worked both to my advantage and his in terms of ability of both of us to gain additional information.

The primary purpose of the assignment was to attend the Seminar organised by the Angolan Government which was to discuss the registration process and elections. The advance planning of the Seminar was minimal and the brief given to Mr. Buttler in the United Kingdom prior to travel to Angola was changed substantially and Mr. Buttler ended up speaking on different topics. Mr. Buttler and I having known one another for several years were able to work jointly on many aspects of the Seminar.

The cost of the Seminar was met largely by the Swedish Government.

Although the time spent in Angola was limited to 10 days the programme of activity was intense and, with the exception of one half day, all the time was spent either in meetings, preparations for the Seminar, at the Seminar or at post-Seminar meetings.

The assignment was characterised for me by the excellent working relationships between all those who were involved in the organisation and management of the Seminar (the Angolan Government delegates and the delegates from the UN, UK, Portugal and Zimbabwe) which made the task both easier and enjoyable and also by the quality of Mr. Boneo's leadership of the UN team and the depth of his knowledge of registration and elections in a difficult environment.

Mr. Boneo has reported directly to the UN and this report has therefore been prepared for IFES; certain of the information contained herein has also been incorporated in Mr. Boneo's report.

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