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  • Observing the conduct of elections

    The Commonwealth has observed more than 130 elections in 36 countries since 1980, most recently observing Zimbabwe’s 2018 General Elections.

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Democracy and elections

Building, supporting and strengthening legal systems in our member countries is a key aim of the Commonwealth. This includes promoting regular elections and strengthening election bodies, institutions and processes.

The Commonwealth regularly sends teams to observe and report on the conduct of elections.  We help build lasting democratic institutions, enabling citizen participation and representation at national and local level. We believe in invitation, not intervention, and follow the principles outlined in the international declaration and code of conduct for election observers

The Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) assesses violations of Commonwealth values and recommends measures to restore democracy and constitutional rule. Composed of 10 Commonwealth member countries, CMAG has authority to suspend a country from the Commonwealth. Its activities, composition and remit are reviewed every two years.

Voting in Guyana ‘orderly and transparent’ but reforms needed, say Commonwealth observers An election station in Guyana

The Commonwealth Observer Group to the Guyana General and Regional Elections has found that the polling on 2 March was “orderly and transparent”, while also highlighting the urgent need for reform.

Papua New Guinea: Referendum on the political future of Bougainville was credible, transparent and inclusive – Commonwealth Observer Group  Observing the vote at a poll station in Bougainville

The Chairperson of the Commonwealth Observer Group for the Bougainville Referendum, Anote Tong, former President of Kiribati, has issued a Preliminary Statement concluding that the referendum process was credible, transparent and inclusive.

Dominica: Commonwealth Observer Group says elections ‘reflected will of people’ Chair on the Commonwealth Observer Group observing the elections

An independent Commonwealth Observer Group (COG) deployed in Dominica, has delivered its interim statement on the 2019 Dominica General Elections, stating the election results ‘reflect the collective will of the people who voted.’ 

Dominica: Observer Group Chairperson Zainab Bangura calls for peaceful elections Chairperson of the Commonwealth Observer Group, Zainab Bangura, speaking to stakeholders

As Election Day approaches in Dominica, the Chair of the Commonwealth Observer Group (COG), is encouraging ‘peaceful elections.’

Commonwealth to observe General Elections in Dominica Commonwealth Observer Group on the ground in Dominica

A Commonwealth Observation Group (COG) has arrived in Dominica to observe the upcoming elections. The COG arrived in the country on 27 November following an invitation from Dominica Prime Minister Hon Roosevelt Skerrit to observe general elections scheduled for Friday 6 December.

Namibia election: largely peaceful and orderly says Commonwealth Observer Group Commonwealth Observer Election Group Press Conference

Namibia’s election on 27 November was carried out in a largely peaceful and orderly manner, according to an interim statement issued by the Commonwealth observers who were deployed to the country.