Burundi held presidential and parliamentary elections in 2015. These elections tested the viability of the country’s political institutions and the commitment of its leaders to peaceful democratic development. To address key issues in the run-up to the 2015 elections, promote transparent political processes, and play a constructive role throughout the election period, the International Foundation for Electoral Systems’ (IFES) program in Burundi fostered dialogue among stakeholders to develop a conducive environment and legal framework for genuinely competitive elections.
Specifically, IFES focused on the following objectives:
- Providing technical assistance to the National Independent Electoral Commission (CENI) to improve election management and increase transparency;
- Supporting an informed and active citizenry through civic and voter education to advance citizen understanding of the electoral process and promote peaceful political participation;
- Supporting a peaceful election process by establishing an early warning and early response system designed to quickly identify and respond to incidents of electoral violence; and
- Supporting a combined media synergy initiative to ensure accurate and consistent reporting on the electoral process.
In order to accomplish these objectives, IFES implemented a series of complementary program activities in partnership with the CENI and various civil society organizations possessing both technical expertise and an intimate understanding of the cultural and political dynamics at play.