Philippines: Advancing Reforms in Philippine Election Administration

Publication Date: 
28 Feb 2008

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INTRODUCTION

This final report concludes the implementation of IFES’ activities carried out under the program “Advancing Reforms in Philippine Election Administration”” with funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The program was implemented from October 1, 2005 through November 30, 2008.

IFES is an international NGO that supports development of democracy around the world. Since 1987, IFES has been engaged in a broad range of democracy and governance programming, including elections assistance, in more than 100 countries. IFES is widely known for the nonpartisan role it maintains in elections and for the consistent quality of the technical electoral assistance services it provides.

The Advancing Reforms in Philippine Election Administration program was built on the recommendations proposed by a team of IFES consultants who traveled to the Philippines in March 2004 to assess the political situation, at the invitation of the President of the Republic of the Philippines. The team found that the 2004 election cycle was plagued by operational and political deficiencies, such as the use of manual election methodologies, and a deficient level of training of election officials by the COMELEC1. The final report recommended supporting modernized electoral reform in many areas, including voter education, legal framework and institutional change within the election administration itself.

As a result, IFES designed this project to address the immediate and long-term electoral reform agenda by working through civil society and directly with the COMELEC. Over the 3.2 years of the project, IFES achieved important results such as:

  1. Enhancing the professional capacity of COMELEC through the establishment of standardized training resources, including an Election Handbook and Training Guide and the Election Resource and Training Center2 (ERTC);
  2. Establishing Citizens CARE, the only volunteer and wide-reaching election monitoring and voter education network in the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (ARMM); and,
  3. Assisting key local partners to build Philippine election capacity to conduct modern elections and increase confidence in the electoral process, closing the knowledge gap in the areas of election adjudication, the appointment of COMELEC Commissioners, political finance, election automation, and more.