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CEPPS in Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)

Since 2016, CEPPS has worked to support more transparent, inclusive, and credible elections in the DRC. Starting in 2018, CEPPS has administered the USAID/DRC Funded Electoral Integrity Activity (DEIA) to provide technical assistance to election organizers and strengthen local civil society organizations (CSOs), and domestic observer groups.
CEPPS Overarching Goals:

CEPPS works with the DRC’s Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI), CSOs, government officials, and international partners to increase the accountability, transparency, and overall integrity of the DRC’s electoral processes

CEPPS Approach:

CEPPS provides technical assistance to the CENI, and citizen outreach to promote transparent, credible elections.  

CEPPS builds the capacity of local organizations to organize and deploy domestic observer missions and coordinate their efforts to advocate for improvements to key electoral processes, supports reform-minded legislators to coordinate, collaborate, and engage with government and civil society actors, and increases citizen capacity to advocate for policy reforms and hold elected officials accountable.  

CEPPS Key Achievements in DRC:

  • As part of its electoral reform analysis from the 2018 electoral cycleCEPPS conducted a desk review of election observation reports to prepare a feasibility matrix of election reform recommendations.  
  • Following the 2018/19 elections, CEPPS wrote and presented a white paper with concrete and actionable recommendations on comprehensive electoral reform in the DRC, which was shared with key electoral stakeholders and is part of ongoing discussions for electoral reform in the DRC. 
  • Following the 2018/2019 elections, CEPPS hosted a series of focus group discussions in five cities in the DRC to better understand citizen’s perceptions of the DRC electoral process.  
  • Ahead of the 2018-2019 electoral cycle, CEPPS trained and provided continuous advisory support to 70 lead domestic observers from six organizations representing all of the country’s 26 provinces, building their capacity to coordinate and field effective election observation missions. 
  • From November 2018 through January 2019, CEPPS deployed an International Election Assessment Mission (IEAM) to monitor the DRC electoral process, meeting with more than 300 electoral stakeholders and drafting more than 200 reports. 
  • In 2019, CEPPS conducted a nationwide in-person public opinion poll to gather information on citizens’ post-election opinions and expectations in an effort to inform DRC decision-makers, civil society actors, and international stakeholders. 
  • In 2020, CEPPS completed a series of 18 online training sessions for members of the Dynamic of Women Candidates (DYNAFEC) and the Dynamic of Provincial Women’s Networks (DRF) on the inclusion of gender aspect in the Congolese electoral legal framework. Through these sessions, 123 women gained skills and mastered tools to advance effective electoral reform. Since completing the training sessions, members of DYNAFEC and DRF have actively participated in election reform discussion and decision-making fora, ensuring not only a strong gender representation, but also consideration of gender-sensitive aspects in those fora.  DYNAFEC has also developed a table of recommendations related to electoral reform that the organization is popularizing among key electoral stakeholders. 
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