Pal-Think conducted four awareness sessions on election issues and themes in collaboration with a number of civil society institutions, by following all COVID-19’s safety procedures.
These sessions were carried out in continuation of the Pal-Think’s strategic studies role in strengthening the role of civil society in supporting Palestinian elections and in empowering Palestinian society and enhancing its awareness and knowledge of electoral issues and themes. It is worth noting that these four sessions are part of “Young Gender-equality Research Chapter- phase 2: Empowering Civil Society Role to Achieve Palestinian Elections” project, which is being implemented by Pal-Think and funded by the Government of Canada.
The first session was held at the Nebras Association for Development in Deir al-Balah city, was entitled “Mechanisms for strengthening the role of civil society in supporting Palestinian elections,” with a number of civil society activists and journalists.
The meeting was moderated by Ms Magda Shehada, a lawyer at the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, who spoke during the meeting about the concept of monitoring the electoral process and the types of observers. The mechanism of the observers’ work on the electoral process, as demonstrated during the meeting, demonstrated the rights and duties of observers during the electoral process, the right to file complaints and monitor irregularities and the important role of the media during the electoral process.
The second session, entitled Elections and the Importance of the Role of NGOs, was conducted at Ajyal Society for Innovation and Development in Gaza City, in the presence of a number of representatives of civil society organizations.
The meeting was moderated by Mr Abdallah Sharshara, a lawyer, who gave a thorough explanation of the oversight and supportive role of civil society institutions during the electoral process. He then spoke about the process of electoral monitoring, noting the importance of the monitoring process at all stages of the election, with a focus on monitoring campaign finance.
Mr Sharshara also stressed many rights such as the rights to participate in the process of reform of the financing and campaign spending system. Also, the right to access information, and the right to file complaints and monitor irregularities.
While the third meeting, entitled Youth and Political Participation, was held in the presence of a number of young people and graduates of both genders at United Cultural and Social Association
The meeting was moderated by Dr Islam Attalla, a researcher and writer in political science, who spoke about political participation, its importance, elections and their importance, the need for youth participation and ways to strengthen this participation at the present time. In addition, Attalla Spoke about the definition, importance and procedures of elections. Young people in turn presented the concepts of political participation, youth participation in elections, their own experiences, their criticism of the electoral process and youth participation of young people on electoral lists.
The fourth meeting, entitled Women and the Importance of Political Participation was held at the Aisha Association for Woman and Child Protection, in the presence of women form marginalized area.
The meeting was moderated by the Advocate for Women and Gender Issues, Mrs Heba Al-Dhanaf, who spoke about the definition of political participation and thus demonstrated the importance of women’s political participation. She also spoke about the selection criteria for electoral lists and the mechanism for overcoming obstacles to women’s participation in the electoral process.
It is worth noting that the meetings include a series of questions, interventions and queries raised by the attendees and answered by the moderators.
The designations employed and the representation of material in these meetings do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Government of Canada.”