AESF-VI: Stakeholders affirm dedication to strengthen democracy, promote electoral integrity through electoral reforms

The participants of the sixth Asian Electoral Stakeholder Forum (AESF-VI) affirmed their dedication to strengthen democracy and promote electoral integrity through electoral reforms, encapsulated in the Kathmandu Declaration.

Around 300 electoral stakeholders from election management bodies (EMBs), election observer groups, civil society organizations, academe, international NGOs, among others, gathered in Kathmandu, Nepal from 6 to 7 December 2023 to discuss electoral issues and challenges and shared insights, lessons and best practices to further strengthen and push for electoral democracy.

Keynote Speaker former chief election commissioner of the Election Commission of India Dr. Shahabuddin Yaqoob (S.Y.) Quraishi.
Plenary Session: Sustainable Democracy through Electoral Reforms

AESF-VI hosted seven panel discussions which further fleshed out the impact of money politics, disinformation on elections, inclusion of marginalized groups and employment of alternative voting mechanisms and technology to increase political participation, effect of elections to the environment, and promotion of sustainable democracy through electoral reforms.

The two-day event culminated in the signing of the “Kathmandu Declaration on Strengthening Democracy and Promoting Electoral Integrity through Electoral Reforms in Asia” between Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) and the Election Commission, Nepal (ECN).

Panel Discussion: Influence of Money in Elections
Panel Discussion: Advancing Democratic Participation: Inclusion of Marginalized Communities in the Electoral Process in Asia

ANFREL and ECN co-hosted the AESF-VI, in partnership with the General Election Observation Committee (GEOC) and the National Election Observation Committee (NEOC).

AESF is a continuing engagement between election management bodies, civil society organizations and other election stakeholders from across Asia and beyond. To date, there have been five iterations of the AESF, held in Bangkok, Thailand (2012), Dili, Timor-Leste (2015), Bali, Indonesia (2016), Colombo, Sri Lanka (2018) and online (2021).

Panel Discussion: Use of alternative voting mechanisms and technology in increasing the political participation
Panel Discussion: Environment and Elections
Panel Discussion: Online Media, Elections and Democracy

ANFREL gathered the summary and highlights of the panel discussions here:

AESF-VI-Panel-Discussion-Summary

Kathmandu-Declaration-to-Strengthen-Democracy-and-Promote-Electoral-Integrity-through-Electoral-Reforms-in-Asia

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