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CEPPS in Jordan

Since 2003, CEPPS has worked in Jordan to improve engagement in political and electoral processes and support decision-makers and government institutions in responding effectively to citizens’ needs.
CEPPS Overarching Goals:

Working alongside traditionally marginalized groups including youth, women and persons with disabilities (PWDs), civil society organizations (CSOs), political parties and national and local decision-makers, CEPPS aims to increase citizens’ participation in Jordan’s political reform process, enhance local and national government responsiveness to citizen needs and strengthen the role of civil society in promoting government accountability and transparency.

CEPPS Approach:

CEPPS uses a multi-pronged approach to strengthen citizen participation and trust in Jordan’s political processes, at both the local and national levels. CEPPS assists Jordanian members of parliament, local elected officials, and government ministries in improving their public outreach strategies, and increasing the integration of citizens’ input into the legislative processes. CEPPS triangulates this approach by working with local CSOs implementing parliamentary and government monitoring activities aimed at increasing citizen awareness and government accountability.

CEPPS supports CSOs by effectively monitoring national and local elections, and engages with youth, potential women candidates, civil society partners and Jordan’s Independent Election Commission (IEC) to increase awareness of, and participation in, elections through diverse entry points. To further increase citizens’ participation, and trust in Jordan’s development and consolidation of pluralistic, fair, broad-based and elected institutions, CEPPS equips youth, women and PWDs with the knowledge, skills and opportunities to meet with stakeholders, lead issue-based campaigns, run for elections and participate as active leaders in their communities.

CEPPS Key Achievements in Jordan:

CEPPS increases the participation and influence of women, youth and persons with disabilities in Jordan’s political process

  • Throughout Jordan, CEPPS has supported the increased, and effective participation of youth in Jordan’s political participation through the “Ana Usharek” programs, and the Youth Leadership Academy, which, collectively, have engaged more than 30,000 youth in advocacy initiatives, debates, discussion sessions, forums and meetings with CSOs and local and national decision-makers.
  • To promote political participation among persons with disabilities, CEPPS reached 526 PWD caretakers and PWD rights activists in 9 governorates through training and awareness sessions on the 2017 Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, community advocacy, and community-level initiatives to highlight the role of PWD in civic and political life.
  • In 2013, and with CEPPS’ technical support, women members of Parliament (MPs) established the first ever women’s caucus in Jordan’s parliament, which increased the country’s capacity to address legislative barriers to women’s political participation, while improving public perception towards women’s involvement and representation in decision-making positions.
  • CEPPS has expanded and strengthened women’s participation in Jordan’s electoral processes by increasing the number of potential women candidates during each election cycle since 2007. At the local level, CEPPS has reached 177 women through campaign management and candidacy training.  Additionally, CEPPS connected to 253 women in poverty pockets, and 174 at the national level through leadership academies, skills training on polling and leading community initiatives, policy development and campaigns.

CEPPS strengthens the integrity of and participation in Jordan’s elections

  • Since 2007, CEPPS has supported the domestic election observation of four elections and conducted international observation missions during the 2013 and 2016 general elections. Ahead of the 2016 general elections, CEPPS worked with the IEC and elected officials to introduce a new election law that dictated significant reforms, across several key areas in Jordan’s electoral process, which provided for the participation of all major political parties, removing the one-person vote system, increasing seats allocated to the parliamentary women’s quota, adopting procedures and technology aimed at minimizing election fraud and introducing automatic voter registration.

CEPPS supports transparent and inclusive practices in national and sub-national government institutions

  • CEPPS partnered with local CSOs to advocate for increased government transparency and accountability in Jordan, a country which has not historically welcomed civil society actors to monitor government commitments, parliamentary performance or elections. Under the provision of CEPPS technical and financial assistance, CSOs such as Al Hayat Center for Civil Society and Al Quds Center for Political Studies have conducted and normalized parliamentary and government monitoring practices, identified existing institutional and administrative gaps in Jordanian legislative and government bodies and issued recommendations to address the decentralization process and other good governance challenges. Both partners have emerged as credible CSOs highly valued by citizens.

CEPPS assists elected officials to better fulfill their roles and conduct more effective public outreach

  • CEPPS’s cross-sectoral approach to address the legal and administrative needs of Jordan’s parliament resulted in  a robust public outreach system that more effectively responds to citizens’ demands and incorporates the input of civil society into legislation. Today, Jordan’s parliament has adopted more progressive bylaws, which have led to strengthening the role and capacities of administrative staff, further defining the roles of parliamentary blocs and committees, and establishing a social media unit to reach more citizens in the digital age.
  • CEPPS’s efforts have strengthened parliament’s role in legislative oversight by equipping individual members of parliament (MPs), the parliamentary speaker of house and administrative staff with international best practices on oversight tools such as the issuance of parliamentary reports and the use of communication and outreach strategies aimed at government officials.
  • In an effort to connect citizens with their elected officials and to establish trust in municipalities, CEPPS helped organize 23 demand driven town hall meetings—in coordination with mayors and municipal councilors—which provided the opportunity for 1,272 citizens, including 398 women, to connect and discuss citizen needs, priorities and ongoing challenges.
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