22 August 2008

UNDP East Timor: New training plan to benefit key political party members

New training plan to benefit key political party members

Dili, Timor-Leste 15 August 2008

Senior representatives of every political party in Timor-Leste will benefit from a six-week training course in Basic Finance Skills organized by the National Electoral Commission (CNE) in collaboration with the UNDP Support to the Timorese Electoral Cycle Project.

The purpose of the training course is to familiarize the party officials with basic finance and accounting systems in the context of the Law on Political Party Funding System which came into effect in June 2008. The course which began on 7 August and will run until 19 September, 2008, includes 45 training hours in essential skills such as budget, reporting, procurement, salaries and microsoft money.

President of CNE, Dr Faustino Cardoso, UNDP Country Director, Mr. Akbar Usmani and Chief Technical Advisor to the UNDP electoral project, Mr. Andres Del Castillo were among the guests who attended the opening ceremony, held at the CNE Headquarters in Balide, Dili. Each of the main political parties in the country has two participants, bringing the total number to about 40 people.

Dr Cardoso stressed the significance of the new training course, which he stated, “is a further demonstration of the enduring collaboration between the National Electoral Commission and UNDP.”

He continued: “One of our main priorities this year is to continue to build the capacity of the political parties and we are grateful for the support UNDP is giving us in this area. I hope that this course will be successful and that we will maintain our strong relationship with the UNDP.”

In his remarks, UNDP Country Director Mr. Akbar Usmani highlighted the importance of UNDP partnership with the CNE saying the “training will give the needed skills and knowledge to enable the political parties to prepare accurate financial reports and transparent accounting systems. UNDP considers that this cooperation will effectively contribute to the political stabilization of the country, and to build a democratic and transparent electoral system.”

The State budget includes US $1 million to be distributed among the political parties with parliamentary representation to support their operations, with the CNE tasked with the responsibility of disbursing and monitoring the use of these funds.

The UNDP Support to the Timorese Electoral Cycle Project, aims at upholding the principles of democracy and good governance, enhancing citizen participation and thus contributing to political stabilization in Timor-Leste. This will be accomplished by establishing a framework for international assistance for the Timorese electoral cycle, coordinating international donor support as well as targeting funds and services more effectively.


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