Chief Election Commissioner of India, Sunil Arora was elected as the new Chairman of Association of World Election Bodies (A-WEB) for the term 2019-21 as India took over the Chair from Romania at the 4th General Assembly of A-WEB at Bengaluru on September 03, 2019.
More than 110 delegates from 45 countries attended the meeting. On this occasion, Sunil Arora, CEC india, along with the two Election Commissioners of India namely, Ashok Lavasa and Sushil Chandra and Senior Deputy Election Commissioner of India, Umesh Sinha also launched ECI’s quarterly magazine – ‘VOICE International’ which shares best practices from more than 30 Countries.
Sunil Arora cited Mahatma Gandhi’s writings, which says, ‘Democracy must in essence mean the art and science of mobilizing the entire physical, economic and spiritual resources of all the various sections of the people in the service of the common good of all’. Arora also noted that the very Preamble of A-WEB Charter spells out the vision of A-WEB wherein it mentions the need for strengthening cooperation between and among EMBs for the purpose of ensuring a credible electoral process in the world; committing to promote conditions conducive to free, fair, transparent and participative elections and to the development of a democratic culture in the world; promoting gender equality and the inclusion of People with Disabilities (PwDs) and other marginalized communities in the electoral process. “Moreover, more than two-third of global population now lives under democratic rule,” he added.
Arora announced that an A-WEB Centre would be setup at the India International Institute of Democracy and Election Management (IIIDEM), New Delhi for documentation, research and training; for sharing best practices and capacity building among the members EMBs of the Association. The Institute has already conducted over 750 training programmes for over 27,000 election officials in India besides organising 62 International Capacity Building Programmes for over 1165 election officials from 96 countries. Standard training modules for National & International participants are developed by a renowned team of Indian and International experts. The members greatly appreciated the generous offer from India to support capacity building program for other countries.
The General Assembly also ratified the appointment of the new Vice Chairman of A-WEB –Glen Vuma Mashinini, Chairperson of Election Commission of South Africa and the new Secretary General, Jonghyun Choe, from Republic of Korea. Bidding farewell to Outgoing Secretary General of A-WEB, Yong-Hi Kim, Arora complimented him for steering the Secretariat in a professional and efficient manner and expanding the activities of A-WEB. Arora placed on record deep gratitude to the Outgoing Chairman Constantin – Florin Mituletu – Buica, Hon’ble President of the Permanent Electoral Authority of Romania for having shouldered the responsibility as the Chairperson of AWEB for the last two years.
Accepting the responsibility as Chairman of AWEB, Arora said “Election Commission of India looks forward to further strengthening its interaction and partnership with A-WEB Secretariat and member EMBs in promoting the activities of the Association as per its objectives and empowering the fellow EMBs through its capacity building programmes”. He thanked the Members for the trust and confidence reposed in the Election Commission of India.
Edited by ECI