Press Release, for immediate release
Windhoek, Namibia 14th October 2009 - African Elections Project launched in Namibia
A two day workshop aimed at equipping journalists with cutting edge Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) skills in elections
coverage took place in Windhoek; recently as Namibia prepare to go the polls on 27-28 November 2009 to elect parliamentary representatives and president.
The workshop was organized by African Elections Project www.africanelections.org in conjunction with Media Institute for Southern
Africa (MISA) www.misa.org with funding from Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa. www.osisa.org
The role of the media in ensuring free and fair elections is indispensable. All over the world the media is playing this important role of ensuring free
and fair elections by working with all stakeholders across board. The media can strengthen the electoral process by providing independent information
through impartial coverage. Three important focal issues come into play: access to information on the political process, ability to undertake
investigative journalism and documentation of lessons and experiences from the electioneering process. To enable Journalists stay on top of these
issues, African Elections Project was established in year 2008 to empowered journalists to cover elections using Information and Communication
Technologies (ICTs) across the continent.
After a successful take-off in Ghana, Cote d' Ivoire, Mozambique, Botswana, Malawi and Guinea, the African Elections Project (AEP) launched its Namibia phase of the project in Windhoek on 13th October 2009. The Namibian project has the following key components: Training for journalists; development and dissemination of an election guide for the media, an SMS/Mobile application in election coverage and monitoring; information and knowledge Online Portal (www.africanelections.org/namibia ) and Knowledge products for the media and Media Content Monitoring. In Southern Africa, AEP is covering Botswana www.africanelections.org/botswana elections schedule to take place on 16th October 2009 and Mozambique's elections www.africanelections.org/mozambique taking place on 28th October 2009.
At the opening ceremony of Namibia's workshop, MISA's regional director, Kaitira Kandjii, said " we are excited to be part of this project since it will go a long way to provide capacity building for journalists in the use of ICTs tools in elections coverage thereby playing a contributory role in achieving free and fair elections"
The African Elections Project is coordinated by the International Institute for ICT Journalism (www.penplusbytes.org) working hand in hand with key partners.
AEP Communications Department