Statement on United Nations Support to the Electoral Process in Kenya

December 21, 2016  Nairobi : UNDP is one of UN agencies whose central mandate provides for electoral support to the UN Member States. UNDP has over the years performed this role within the framework of the Note of Guidance defining UN Role in Electoral Assistance (2001) as revised.

UN electoral assistance is provided only on the basis of a specific request from the national authorities, which, for Kenya, was received in 2014.

UN electoral assistance is guided by several principles including: National sovereignty and ownership; objective, impartial, neutral and independent assistance; norm-based assistance aimed at furthering respect for all basic human rights and compliance with the rights and principles enshrined in the Charter of the UN, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political rights and other relevant international legal documents.

Electoral assistance provided by the United Nations continues to be carried out in an objective, impartial, neutral and independent manner.

UNDP wishes to confirm that the Strengthening Electoral Processes in Kenya (SEPK) (2015-2018) has been developed, and is implemented in line with these principles. The project is aimed at providing technical support to the IEBC and other related government institutions; and encouraging broad-based citizen participation in the electoral process. The Project Document was approved and signed by the Government (led by the National Treasury) and UNDP on 7 July 2015. It was the product of extensive consultation with various stakeholders.

To date, the UNDP SEPK project has received resources for the current phase from various bilateral donors including the USA, United Kingdom and European Union to support planning for constitutionally mandated institutions engaged in the electoral process. These include the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties (ORPP).

UNDP furthermore manages the Amkeni Wakenya project phase I (2008-2014) and phase II (2015- 2018), implemented in collaboration with sister UN agencies including UN Women and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), and aims to promote inclusive and participatory governance through support to civil society. This project has received support since 2008 at various times from Sweden, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway and the European Union.

UNDP has also received support from Sweden in a related project called UWIANO aimed at addressing peace and security in the context of elections through working with civil society.

All UNDP projects are part of the overall United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) programme agreed with the Government of Kenya; and are aligned with national development priorities stated in Vision 2030 and Medium Term Plan (MTPII).

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