The United Nations envoy to Guinea-Bissau has urged the international community to support the country in its upcoming legislative election, saying it would play an important role in preventing a relapse into political and institutional instability.
While briefing the UN Security Council, José Viegas Filho, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Guinea-Bissau and the head of the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in the country (UNIOGBIS) called for sustained international support for the West African nation.
“I therefore urge all international partners to maintain and increase their political, technical and financial support to help national institutions during and beyond the legislative and presidential elections,” Filho said.
Guinea-Bissau’s legislative elections are scheduled for 18 November.
Filho informed the Council of some difficulties in the preparations for the vote, including disagreements voiced by some political actors against the 30-day timeframe set by the government for voter registration and delays in arrival of biometric kits.
On the other hand, the senior UN official also highlighted important developments, including the adoption of a new gender parity quota law, on 2 August, which establishes a minimum of 36 per cent representation for women in the lists of candidates for legislative and local government elections, as well as for appointments to key decision-making positions.
This, he explained, is a “significant development” for gender equality and women’s empowerment in Guinea-Bissau.