Africa-Press – Lesotho. The Minister of Defence And Veterans’ Affairs Of The Republic Of Namibia also Head of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Electoral Observation Mission (SEOM), Mr, Frans Kapofi officiated the launch of the SADC Electoral Observation Mission (SEOM) at the event held in Maseru.
Speaking at the event, Mr. Kapofi said he is honoured to welcome everyone on behalf of His Excellency Dr G. Geingob, President of the Republic of Namibia, who is the Chairperson of the SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation.
He, therefore, expressed gratitude to the Independent Electoral Commission of the Kingdom of Lesotho for the invitation extended to SADC to observe the National Assembly Elections scheduled to take place on 7th October 2022 in the Kingdom of Lesotho.
He said since their arrival, the mission has observed general calm and peace, saying these are signs of the progressing democratic culture of the people of Lesotho, hence commending the government and the people of the Kingdom of Lesotho.
He said SADC observes elections in its Member States based on the Revised SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections (2021), saying all SADC Member States affirmed their commitment to implementing these Principles and Guidelines.
He noted that the Principles and Guidelines provide an objective and scientific methodology for the observation of elections in order to contribute to the consolidation of democracy in the Region by enhancing best electoral practices and addressing any electoral shortcomings. Mr.
Kapofi said the SADC Electoral Observation Mission (SEOM) has been in Lesotho since 25th September 2022 to observe the elections set for October 07, 2022, which are for the purpose of electing members of the National Assembly, saying through this process, the leader of the political party or group of political parties forming a majority in the National Assembly will be elected as the Prime Minister of the country.
“SADC urges all registered voters to exercise their civic and political rights by going out to vote on 7th October 2022. We encourage all stakeholders to ensure that these elections are conducted in a peaceful, free, fair, transparent and credible.
We look forward to an electoral process that adheres to democratic values and principles envisioned in the SADC Treaty, the Protocol on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation; and the revised SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections,” he stressed.
He said there will be a release of the Preliminary Statement regarding the mission’s observations of the 2022 National Assembly Elections on 9th October 2022, at Lesotho Avani. The observers have been deployed to ten districts of Lesotho.