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AU Observer Mission in Senegal ahead of polls

Feb 21, 2012, 11:44 AM

African Union Commission chairperson Jean Ping has deployed an observer mission to Senegal within the context of the upcoming presidential elections to be held on 26 February 2012.

This Mission is headed by Olusegun Obasanjo, former president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Following the reported pre-electoral violence in Senegal, the current AU chairperson, M. Thomas Yayi Boni, called upon “all political actors and stakeholders to remain calm”.

He exhorted them to “start an inclusive political dialogue in order to ensure a peaceful and transparent electoral process to consolidate the remarkable achievements of Senegal during its contemporary period as well as its path towards democracy”.

AU observer missions are composed of members of the Pan African Parliament, leaders of the national independent electoral commissions, members of the AU permanent representatives committee (PRC), representatives of human rights organizations and African civil society.

This mission will operate following the relevant provisions of the Durban Declaration on the Principles Governing Democratic Elections in Africa, adopted in July 2002, by the heads of state and governments of the African Union.

The African Union observer mission arrived in Dakar on 18 February 2012, and established their headquarters at Radisson Blu hotel.