CCEDU is seeking a National Coordinator (Chief Executive Officer). The National Coordinator will be the primary head of the CCEDU Secretariat and will provide vision and leadership for CCEDU’s programme and administration activities. He or she will design and implement CCEDU’s strategy, and provide overall managerial guidance to operationalise the Coalition’s legislative reform advocacy, voter education/mobilisation and electoral process monitoring plan. The National Coordinator will be responsible for ensuring that CCEDU undertakes strategic interventions to increase citizen participation, promote transparency and integrity in Uganda’s electoral processes. He or she will support optimised performance and ensure all statutory and other legal requirements and obligations are met.

 

JOB TITLE                              :     NATIONAL COORDINATOR, CCEDU

 

 CATEGORY                           :     MANAGERIAL

 

 GRADE                                  :     CCEDU 1.0

 

 RESPONSIBLE TO               :     CHAIRPERSON, BOARD OF DIRECTORS, CCEDU

 

ABOUT CCEDU                     :

Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) is a registered Ugandan consortium of civil society organizations and individual members founded on 19 August 2009. Since inception, CCEDU has remained a leading player in advocacy for electoral reforms, monitoring electoral processes and executing innovative voter education campaigns in Uganda. CCEDU’s day-to-day business is managed by the Secretariat with registered offices in Kampala, Uganda, East Africa. The Head of the Secretariat (National Coordinator) manages all secretariat staff and reports to the Board of Directors. The Membership Platform is CCEDU’s highest decision-making organ – and convenes annually.

 

 SUMMARY OF JOB DESCRIPTION:

CCEDU is seeking a National Coordinator (Chief Executive Officer). The National Coordinator will be the primary head of the CCEDU Secretariat and will provide vision and leadership for CCEDU’s programme and administration activities. He or she will design and implement CCEDU’s strategy, and provide overall managerial guidance to operationalise the Coalition’s legislative reform advocacy, voter education/mobilisation and electoral process monitoring plan. The National Coordinator will be responsible for ensuring that CCEDU undertakes strategic interventions to increase citizen participation, promote transparency and integrity in Uganda’s electoral processes. He or she will support optimised performance and ensure all statutory and other legal requirements and obligations are met.

 

TASKS:

  • Provide overall coordination of CCEDU’s program, finance and administration portfolio;
  • Oversee the design, implementation, and evaluation of CCEDU’s program strategies and activities;
  • Ensure the highest quality of program monitoring, evaluation, reporting and communication;
  • In coordination with the CCEDU Board of Directors, identify, recruit and hire CCEDU staff as well as consultants;
  • Recommend policies, controls and procedures to guide and deliver optimum performance;
  • Ensure execution of program and administration tasks in a timely manner within the allocated financial plans;
  • Oversee preparation and presentation of financial reports to the CCEDU Board of Directors as well as to internal and external partners;
  • Serve as the primary representative of CCEDU with local and international stakeholders including cultivating collaborative working relations with key state and non-state actors to ensure timely and successful achievement of the Coalition’s goals;
  • Provide general supervision, management and mentoring of CCEDU secretariat staff, including performance appraisals, staff development and other management issues;
  • Perform other duties as may be required of this office.

 

QUALIFICATIONS:

  • A minimum of a Masters Degree in a relevant field preferably in Political Science, Public Administration, Laws, Human Rights, Business Administration, International Relations, or International Law. Any other qualification is an added advantage.

 

EXPERIENCE:

  • A minimum of 10 years working experience in the democracy and governance field, including a minimum of five (5) years of experience with election-related administration and management – at senior managerial level.

 

RELEVANT SKILLS:

  • Strong interpersonal, and communication skills to effectively coordinate with CCEDU’s broad profile of stakeholders;
  • Good staff and team management skills;
  • Good appreciation of local (Uganda) and regional (East and Southern Africa) politics and development issues;
  • Strong administrative and financial skills;
  • Proven ability to mobilise resources, identify new business opportunities and partnerships.

 

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS:

  • Strong advocacy abilities, including experience with one-on-one advocacy with high-level policymakers;
  • Ability to prepare reports, formulating positions on issues, articulating options concisely, making and defending recommendations;
  • Ability to work under pressure and handle multiple tasks.

 

JOB PACKAGE:

  • CCEDU will offer an attractive market related/clean-wage bill salary and conditions commensurate with the qualifications and experience to the successful applicant.
  • This is a three (3) year contract position, subject to renewal depending on performance and availability of funding.

 

METHOD OF APPLICATION:

Candidates meeting the stipulated minimum job requirements should apply by sending a motivation letter, detailed Curriculum Vitae, copies of academic and professional certificates, and traceable contact details of three referees not later than Friday 14th August 2020, to:

Chairperson, CCEDU Board of Directors

Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU)

Plot 2876 Galukande Close, Muyenga, Kampala

P.O. Box 11027 Kampala, Uganda

OR:

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   or       This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

NOTE:

  • CCEDU is an equal opportunity employer. CCEDU is also committed to preventing any type of unwanted behaviour at work including sexual harassment, exploitation and abuse, lack of integrity and financial misconduct. CCEDU expects all staff, volunteers and consultants to share this commitment.
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.
  • For more information about CCEDU, please visit: https://ccedu.org.ug

Civil Society Organization, Citizen’s Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CEEDU) wants government to develop a temporary legislation to strike a balance between political and health rights of stakeholders in the 2021 general election.

The new development came out of a stakeholder meeting between the parliamentary committee on Legal affairs and CCEDU, over the election roadmap which was recently released by the Electoral Commission (EC) ahead of the 2021 elections. The meeting was held in parliament on Thursday.

According to the Mrs. Charity Ahimbisibwe, the Coordinator CCEDU, the roadmap which was released by the Electoral Commission, contradicts almost all electoral laws in Uganda and as such, a special legislation is required to harmonize the existing laws with the proposals in the revised roadmap.

The revised roadmap which is meant to cater for disruptions due to the covid-19 pandemic has however generated public debate with stakeholders questioning it’s legality, fairness and exclusivity it offers.

 

In a document presented to the committee, CCEDU says that government should develop a ‘Special Arrangements Bill” aiming to ensure the safety of voters but also to safeguard political rights of stakeholders in the 2021 elections.

Charity said, the bill has to look at all the regulations that govern elections including the Presidential Elections Act, Parliamentary Elections Act, Political Parties Organizations Act, Electoral Commission Act, the Public Order Management Act and the Penal Code, to align them with the prevailing situation of the covid-19 pandemic.

However, CCEDU underscored the need to emphasize that the developed bill will from the beginning, be legal and sufficient only for the upcoming elections and do not suffice beyond 2021, since the situation could change.

Alternatively, CCEDU says, the comprehensive guidelines being developed by the Electoral Commission could be compressed into a legal instrument, presented to parliament and given a force of law to govern the forthcoming elections.

CCEDU says, without such an arrangement, the election roadmap in its current form, may lead to gross violation of rights of citizens. They also say, the credibility of the 2021 election is at risk.

CCEDU also suggest urgent need for civic education aiming at promoting civic participation and engagement in the forthcoming elections. They say that the limited time allotted to crucial electoral activities is likely to infringe on rights of Ugandans.

They also propose a review on certain legislation including the Computer Misuse Act and the UCC Act which they claim empower government to determine what citizens post on social media and likely to curtail some individuals access to information and media space.

The COVID-19 pandemic threatens more than the lives and the livelihoods of people throughout the world.  It is also a political crisis that threatens the future of liberal democracy.

 Authoritarian regimes, not surprisingly, are using the crisis to silence critics and tighten their political grip. But even some democratically elected governments are fighting the pandemic by amassing emergency powers that restrict human rights and enhance state surveillance without regard to legal constraints, parliamentary oversight, or timeframes for the restoration of constitutional order. Parliaments are being sidelined, journalists are being arrested and harassed, minorities are being scapegoated, and the most vulnerable sectors of the population face alarming new dangers as the economic lockdowns ravage the very fabric of societies everywhere.

Repression will not help to control the pandemic. Silencing free speech, jailing peaceful dissenters, suppressing legislative oversight, and indefinitely canceling elections all do nothing to protect public health. On the contrary, these assaults on freedom, transparency, and democracy will make it more difficult for societies to respond quickly and effectively to the crisis through both government and civic action.

It is not a coincidence that the current pandemic began in a country where the free flow of information is stifled and where the government punished those warning about the dangers of the virus—warnings that were seen as spreading rumors harmful to the prestige of the state.  When voices of responsible citizens are suppressed, the results can be deadly, not for just one country but for the entire world.

Democracy is not just a cherished ideal. It is the system of government best suited to addressing a crisis of the magnitude and complexity of COVID-19. In contrast to the self-serving claims of authoritarian propaganda, credible and free flows of information, fact-based debate about policy options, the voluntary self-organization of civil society, and open engagement between government and society are all vital assets in combating the pandemic. And they are all key elements of liberal democracy.

It is only through democracy that societies can build the social trust that enables them to persevere in a crisis, maintain national resilience in the face of hardship, heal deep societal divisions through inclusive participation and dialogue, and retain confidence that sacrifice will be shared and the rights of all citizens respected.

It is only through democracy that independent civil society, including women and young people, can be empowered to partner with public institutions, to assist in the delivery of services, to help citizens stay informed and engaged, and to bolster social morale and a sense of common purpose.

It is only though democracy that free media can play their role of informing people so that they can make sound personal and family decisions, scrutinize government and public institutions, and counter disinformation that seeks to tear societies apart.

It is only through democracy that society can strike a sustainable balance between competing needs and priorities – between combatting the spread of the virus and protecting economic security; and between implementing an effective response to the crisis and protecting people’s civil and political rights in accordance with constitutional norms and guarantees.

 

It is only in democracies that the rule of law can protect individual liberties from state intrusion and constraint well beyond what is necessary to contain a pandemic.

It is only in democracies that systems of public accountability can monitor and circumscribe emergency government powers, and terminate them with they are no longer needed.

It is only in democracies that government data on the scope and health-impact of the pandemic can be believed.

Democracy does not guarantee competent leadership and effective governance.  While democracies predominate among the countries that have acted most effectively to contain the virus, other democracies have functioned poorly in responding to the pandemic and have paid a very high price in human life and economic security.  Democracies that perform poorly further weaken society and create openings for authoritarians.

But the greatest strength of democracy is its capacity for self-correction. The COVID-19 crisis is an alarming wake-up call, an urgent warning that the freedoms we cherish are at risk and that we must not take them for granted. Through democracy, citizens and their elected leaders can learn and grow. Never has it been more important for them to do that.

The current pandemic represents a formidable global challenge to democracy. Authoritarians around the world see the COVID-19 crisis as a new political battleground in their fight to stigmatize democracy as feeble and reverse its dramatic gains of the past few decades. Democracy is under threat, and people who care about it must summon the will, the discipline, and the solidarity to defend it. At stake are the freedom, health, and dignity of people everywhere.

The coronavirus pandemic is not only causing havoc around the world but is obviously going to affect the electoral processes of many countries. Uganda is not only the East African country whose electoral process is affected by the COVID-19. Burundi and Tanzania are also supposed to have their elections. General and local elections have already been postponed in more than 40 countries.  In the neighborhood, Burundi has successfully held its General elections on 20th May while Ethiopia has already postponed its much-anticipated national election that was originally scheduled for August 29 this year while. Uganda is set to conduct its general elections in (January) 2021.  

According to the Electoral Commission revised Roadmap for 2020/2021 general election, there were a number of activities that had been planned for the month of March and April which have not been able to take place because of measures instituted by the government in response to the pandemic, for example, the display of tribunal recommendations on who should be removed from the voters’ register at each parish. By early April, the EC was supposed to gazette and publish presidential and parliamentary candidates’ nomination dates and venue. From April 8- 17, the EC would to nominate village special interest groups such as the older persons, youths and people with disabilities. They would also use the same time to campaign and have their elections between April 20-24. This process would extend to the parish level for the same interest groups between April 27-29. Notably, all these activities are void of fruition as the pandemic remains a threat. Covid-19 has put political processes in an entirely new light, specifically posing new questions on how electoral processes are conducted and the impact on campaigns and elections is also becoming evident.

 

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni in a recent interview with NBS TV said that the country’s general elections may not be held as scheduled given the novel coronavirus outbreak. He continued to say that possibility of the same under the current circumstances would be suicidal. The President indicated that an election doesn't require a long campaign time and can easily be organized if we are free of the virus. However, Charity Ahimbisibwe, the acting national coordinator of the Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy Uganda (CCEDU), a civil society organization that has been at the helm of observing elections in Uganda for years, argues that postponing the elections would pose a major legal challenge since it is not provided for under the 1995 Constitution. According to EC officials, a free and fair election requires time and adequate funds to organize not ignoring the fact they have lost time for implementing the road map. With just three months to the planned nomination date for the presidential candidates which were pushed from August to October, it remains unclear as to when the situation will normalize for Electoral Commission and other stakeholders to continue with the preparations.

The debate to whether we should or not postpone elections continues to reflect as concern for the health and safety of everyone is mandatory and a reasonable measure. This however can be challenged if Uganda is flexible enough to pick a leaf from countries like South Korea which have safely held a legislative election amid a spike in the number of Covid-19 infections in the country. This can only be achieved if election administrators can emphasis health and safety measures. Political campaigns can be conducted virtually via media (radio, TV, social media, internet) as they actually are cheaper and more peaceful seeing from South Korea.

 

The Electoral Commission (EC) should identify and assess the feasibility of implementing any new requirements without compromising the integrity or legitimacy of an election. Consideration should be given to the safe conduct of activities throughout the entire electoral cycle.  Activities like, candidate nomination, political campaigning, procurement and electoral dispute resolution must be undertaken in a manner than will not endanger the health of those involved. New ways of electioneering will be ushered in. Media and technology will very much likely be at the heart of any electoral process. Election violence and voter bribery, which are largely driven by the human contact element in elections, could lessen. But what is troubling, is that this could also lessen voter participation.

Considering that there is no foreseeable end to the pandemic and yet elections are a necessary evil, Ugandan citizens should never have to choose between exercising their franchise and keeping themselves safe. In the first place, we would never have to worry about a politically healthy country if we can beat our active enemy, the pandemic. I suggest that while we all put our energies firstly to fighting the spread of Covid-19 in every way possible we should also become more open to exploring alternative ways to execute the electoral processes for Uganda to attain a smooth, free and fair election by January 2021!

CCEDU calls for Tolerance, peace and participation ahead of 2021

On Friday, February 14th 2020, a meeting that was called in preparation for the democratic party’s delegates conference ended in a fist fight between some youths who are divided along political bigwigs within the party. The battle lines within the DP have been drawn on several fronts: namely, those who want to be the next party President and candidates who want to stand on DP ticket.

Three people Ms Brenda Nabukenya, Mp Muwanga Kivumbi and Mr Lubega Mukaaku have all expressed interest in being party president and each have supporters within the party. However, there have also been accusations that some party members are in the DP, but actually subscribe to the ideals of people power and the NRM.

These accusations have led to the use of inflammatory language between party members and it has somewhat bordered on hate speech. As political parties, the electoral law is very clear on defamatory speech and intimidation by candidates while conducting campaigns. According to the Presidential Elections Act section 23(3) and the Parliamentary Elections Act section 21(3):

 

DP's Brenda Nakubenya: Photo Credit: Bukedde

A person shall not, while campaigning, use any language which constitutes incitement to public disorder, insurrection or violence or which threatens war; or (b) which is defamatory or insulting or which constitutes incitement to hatred.

Hate speech, intimidation, and violence are some of the traits that have characterized internal political party politics since the 1996 elections to date. In the past violence only seemed a preserve of national elections, but in the recent past CCEDU has documented increased violence in local by-elections like Arua, Bugiri and Hoima and has seen an increasing trend of violence and intimidation in party primaries.

CCEDU appreciates the fact that Political parties are organizing to participate in the 2021 elections, however, political party actors should be seen to embrace the democratic value of tolerance and peace rather than violence and intimidation. Tolerance for diverse views, should be harnessed as an indicator of political maturity. Political maturity is a cornerstone for sustainable development. Inflammatory or abusive language only serve to draw divisive lines and promote political intolerance. Therefore, CCEDU implores political actors to use respectful language that promotes peace and participation from all quarters.

Elections and electoral processes by their very nature are contentious and tense so anything ranging from fist fights to abusive language can be sparked, if there are no deliberate steps taken by the leaders to promote, peace and tolerance.

It would be commendable if political parties developed policies on peace, reconciliation and tolerance. Violence and intimidation in political parties can partly be attributed to discontent, frustration, mistrust and disgruntlement among the electorate and political actors. Unity at party level should supersede fractionalism so that healthy intra-party relations are developed.

 For more information. Dail 0794 444 410 or send email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For more information and voice interviews:

Contact the Acting Coordinator Charity Kalebbo Ahimbisibwe – 0794 444 409

Or Hon.Dr Miria Matembe- The Chairman Board of Directors CCEDU- 0774 612019