Union Election Commission visits Germany ahead of German national elections


The Federal Returning Officer Dieter Sarreither, responsible for German elections, meets his Myanmar counterpart, Union Election Commission Chair U Hla Thein in Germany

The Federal Returning Officer Dieter Sarreither, responsible for German elections, meets his Myanmar counterpart, Union Election Commission Chair U Hla Thein in Germany. (Credit: International IDEA)

Germany’s much-anticipated national elections will be held on September 25. Yesterday, Myanmar’s Union Election Commission (UEC) began a visit to Germany to learn first-hand how this election of 60 million voters is organized, to observe the campaign, as well as the voting and counting on Election Day. The trip is supported by the European Union through the STEP Democracy programme in Myanmar implemented by International IDEA and partners, according to a statement.

The delegation has already met with the head of Germany’s electoral system, Federal Returning Officer, Mr. Dieter Sarreither and today they will meet with state and local electoral authorities to better understand how a federal system manages a national vote. They will also engage with civil society organisations and learn how civic and voter education in Germany is conducted.

UEC Chair U Hla Thein said, “We want to continue to deliver better and better elections for the Myanmar people, and this study tour will give us a close look at elections in a developed federal state. We look forward to sharing ideas with our German counterparts on improving electoral processes”.

EU Ambassador-designate to Myanmar, Kristian Schmidt, said “The next national elections in Myanmar are still far off, but now is exactly the right time to build the capacities for that day in 2020”.

“The UEC has made important progress towards international good practice in election management, including engaging civil society in voter education efforts.  Sharing these experiences with counterparts and learning from different approaches can help the UEC to further improve the electoral process in Myanmar." commented Mark McDowell, Head of Mission, International IDEA Myanmar.

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