Campaigns & Advocacy
The Campaigns and Advocacy division complements the entirety of ANFREL’s work by raising awareness of ongoing electoral issues in the region and assisting stakeholders and civil society in seeking improvements. The objective of this work is to sustain democracy in Asia by promoting the knowledge of democratic processes and mobilization to enhance the quality and value of elections.
Our advocacy is conducted by responding to the latest electoral developments and other human rights issues affecting the state of democracy in Asia. It does so with an eye on promoting the work of our network members to maximize the impact of their own work, while also promoting initiatives or best practices that would enhance the quality of both elections and election observation groups. This information is shared via our website and social media platforms.
When the situation demands it, ANFREL also releases statements to bring attention to a specific issue that would negatively affect the electoral environment in any country covered by our network. In some cases, we unite forces with other NGOs or stakeholders to produce joint statements that would have a greater impact.
ANFREL is also well positioned to enhance strategic cooperation among its members and, in addition, with governments and international agencies. The division enables ANFREL to act as a bridge between civil society organizations and electoral management bodies in venues such as the Asian Electoral Stakeholder Forum (AESF), a biennial gathering that brings together a diversity of election professionals to advance electoral democracy and combat emerging challenges.
The first such forum took place in Bangkok in 2012 and led to the adoption of the Bangkok Declaration on Free and Fair Elections. Subsequent gatherings were held in Dili (Timor-Leste) in 2015, Bali (Indonesia) in 2016, and Colombo (Sri Lanka) in 2018. This last iteration (AESF-IV) produced the Colombo Pledge to Promote and Defend Electoral Democracy in Asia.