First ever European Union Election Observation Mission launched in Maseru - the Mission deploys 22 long-term election observers
Chief Observer Ignazio Corrao officially launched the European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) to Lesotho in Maseru today. The same morning, the Mission deployed 22 observers to begin long-term observation across Lesotho ahead of the 7 October 2022 National Assembly elections. From now on, the Mission will be permanently present in all ten districts of Lesotho for six weeks.
Based on an invitation by the Government of Lesotho, the EU EOM started its activities in Maseru on 27 August with the arrival of a Core Team of nine experts. The Mission is led by Chief Observer Ignazio Corrao, a Member of the European Parliament from Italy.
When seeing the EU EOM Long-Term Observers outside the EU EOM Headquarters in Maseru, the Chief Observer said: “Today we are deploying 11 teams of Long-Term Observers, each with two members, who will assess every aspect of the electoral process, including the campaigning by political parties, and the preparations for the elections across Lesotho. Long-Term Observers are instrumental to the mission’s conduct of a full and comprehensive assessment of the electoral process, in line with the EU’s established election observation methodology”.
The mission will be reinforced around election day with 30 Short-Term Observers (STOs) as well as a delegation from the European Parliament. An additional number of representatives from EU States' diplomatic representations will add to this contingent. The observers come from all 27 EU Member States, as well as from Norway. Their findings in the ten districts will inform the analysis of the EU EOM Core Team about elections-related developments across the country.
The EU EOM will present its preliminary findings to the public shortly after the 7 October election day and remain in Lesotho until the completion of the electoral process. The final report of the EU EOM, including its recommendations, will be published after the completion of the electoral process.
The EU EOM is bound by a code of conduct, which requires among others strict neutrality and non-interference. It undertakes its work in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, endorsed under UN auspices in 2005.
The EU EOM operates under a separate and distinct mandate from the EU Delegation in Lesotho, and it is independent in its findings from EU Member States and all EU institutions.
For further information, please contact the press office of the EU EOM Lesotho 2022.
Kimmo Räntilä, Press Officer, firstname.lastname@example.org; +266 58658015
Matiisetso Mosala, Press Officer Assistant, email@example.com; +266 6393 0782