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The Forum of Election Management Bodies of South Asia


11th FEMBoSA Meeting

On behalf of Election Commission of Bhutan, H.E. Major General Vetsop Namgyel, Ambassador of Bhutan to India accepted FEMBoSA Logo from Shri Sushil Chandra for Election Commission of Bhutan assuming the role of new Chair of FEMBoSA 2021-22

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  • 11th Meeting of the FEMBoSA was hosted by Election Commission of Bhutan on 11 August 2021 in virtual format

    • ECI

      About FEMBoSA

      By ECI, in FEMBoSA,

      The Forum of the Election Management Bodies of South Asia (FEMBoSA)
      At the first meeting of the representatives of Election Management Bodies of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal and Pakistan held in Dhaka, Bangladesh in the year 2010, it was decided at the conclusion that an organization representing those countries should be established. Consequently, the Annual General Meetings of the Organization were held in the member countries and the charter for the organization also was adopted with the aim of fulfilling the objectives of the organization (Forum of Election Management Bodies of South Asia- FEMBoSA).
      The member countries of the FEMBoSA are the Election Management Bodies of South Asia countries namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal,  Pakistan and Sri Lanka. 
      Since the creation of FEMBoSA, Annual Meetings were held in Pakistan (2011), in India (2012), in Bhutan (2013), in Nepal (2014),  in Sri Lanka (2015), in Maldives (2016), in Afghanistan (2017) and in Bangladesh(2018).  The 10th annual meeting of FEMBoSA was last hosted by Election Commission of India in New Delhi 24 on January 2020. 

      Significant Activities of FEMBoSA
      Member organizations celebrate National Voter's Day in a calendar year in their respective countries Initiative of establishing South Asia Institute for Democracy and Electoral Studies (SAIDES) in Nepal In order to increase knowledge related to elections, take initiatives to include voter education in the school-level textbooks of their respective countries Implementation of recommendations of South Asian Disabilities Organizations for the inclusion of disabled people in the electoral system and the creation of suitable election environment The initiative of establishing FEMBoSA Secretariat has been taken
        The Agenda of the Annual Meetings are aimed to hold discussions on important current topics relevant to Election Management and Electoral Process, giving special attention to the region and decisions were taken on the incoming Chairperson of FEMBoSA and the hosting country for the next meeting. At every meeting, a separate session was held to evaluate the previous year’s activities of the organization as well as for planning the next year’s activities.
      Apart from holding the Annual Meetings the high level officials of the Election Management Bodies of the region are given opportunities to enhance their experiences and skills through training programs and Election Observation Missions during the Election periods.

      In 2013, Banglaesh Election Commission prepared the logo.
      Justification of Logo

    • Objectives

      By ECI, in FEMBoSA,

      The objectives of FEMBoSA are following:
      Promote contact among the Election Management Bodies of SAARC countries; 
        Share experiences with a view to learning from each other; and 
        Cooperate with one another in enhancing the capabilities of the Election Management Bodies towards conducting free and fair elections. 

    • Charter

      By ECI, in FEMBoSA,

      We, the Heads of Election Management Bodies/Representatives of AFGHANISTAN, BANGLADESH, BHUTAN, INDIA, MALDIVES, NEPAL, PAKISTAN AND SRI LANKA;
      CONFIRMING our abiding faith in the objectives and principles of SAARC contained in the SAARC charter;
      RECOGNIZING that the Election Management Bodies of SAARC countries can benefit from one another’s experience and mutual cooperation; and
      REALIZING that such cooperation may be strengthened through a permanent common Forum of the Heads of Election Management Bodies of SAARC Countries;
      AGREE to establish an organization to be known as the Forum of Heads of Election Management Bodies of SAARC Countries, hereinafter referred to as the Forum, with the following objectives, and institutional and other arrangements;
      Objectives of the Forum shall be to:
      promote contact among the Election Management Bodies of the SAARC countries; share experiences with a view to learning from each other; and cooperate with one another in enhancing for capabilities of the Election Management Bodies towards conducting free and fair elections.
      The operational arm shall be the Council of the Forum of Heads of Election Management Bodies of SAARC countries.
      The Council shall be the supreme authority of the Forum and comprise the Heads of the Election Management Bodies of SAARC Countries, or such other Election Commissioner/Member/ authorized representative as may be deputed by the Head of the concerned Election Management Body. The Council shall meet at least once a year in one of the Member countries selected, as far as possible, on the basis of alphabetical rotation; the place and dates to be determined by Council. The meetings of the Council will be held with all members attending. The Head of the Election Management Body of the Host Country shall be the Chair of the Council from commencement of one meeting to  the commencement of the next, and will also discharge secretarial functions during this period. The Council shall; Approve the programmes of the Forum; Decide subjects for discussion in any Conference/ Meeting of the Forum; Consider and decide all matters concerning the Forum and Conduct of the Council; Frame Rules for the conduct of the business of the Forum; and Fix the date and venue of Conferences/ Meetings of the Forum. Adopt an acronym and Logo for the Forum, if possible by circulation.
      Expenses on local hospitality, logistic support and internal travel for any meeting of the Forum shall be borne by the Election Management Body hosting the meeting. Expenditure on international travel shall be borne by the respective visiting delegations.
      Decisions  at all levels of the Forum  shall be taken on the basis of unanimity; Bilateral and contentious issues should be excluded from the deliberation of the Forum. The agreement shall not affect the right of any of the Forum members to interact, cooperate or enter into MoU with other members of the Forum or any other organizations.
      The Forum may establish and maintain relations with other regional and international Electoral Organizations. The Council, in agreement with the organizations concerned, shall determine the nature and forms of such relations; The chairperson, or a member EMB as decided by the Chairperson, will represent the Forum, at their own cost, in meetings of similar other associations or bodies, when invited. The members of the Forum will implement recommendations and decisions adopted by the Forum from time to time.
      A member of the Forum may be leave the Forum after due written notification of its decision. The Forum may be dissolved by a resolution of the Council. Upon such dissolution, the Council shall further decide concerning the disposal of the assets and payment of liabilities of the Forum.
        In faith whereof We Have Set out Hands Hereunto.
      Done in New Delhi, on this the 1st Day of May the year Two Thousand Twelve.
      Download FEMBoSA Charter

    • Rules and Procedures

      By ECI, in FEMBoSA,

      Part One- General
      These Rules of Procedure framed under Article-3 (d) (iv) of the Charter of the Forum of Election Management Bodies of South Asia, shall apply to the annual Meeting of the Forum of Election Management Bodies of South Asia (FEMBOSA), established by Charter, signed on 1st of May 2012, by the Heads of Election Management Bodies (EMBs). Representatives of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The Meetings of FEMBOSA, referred hereafter as the Forum Meeting, shall be held annually, unless otherwise decided at a Forum Meeting. The hosting of the Meetings of FEMBOSA shall be normally rotated amongst the Member EMBs in English alphabetical order. The Head of the host EMB shall take over as the Chair of the FEMBOSA at the Forum Meeting, and be responsible for the discharge of all functions and matters related to the FEMBOSA until handing over to the next EMB at the subsequent Forum Meeting. In case a member EMB is unable to host a Meeting, it should be immediately communicated to the Chair who shall then invite the next EMB in the alphabetical listing to host the Meeting and accordingly inform all the other member EMBs.
        Part Two- Forum Meeting Agenda
      The provisional agenda for each meeting shall be drafted by the host EMB and circulated to the other Members after receipt of the incumbent Chair’s concurrence. Matters which have been brought to the attention of the Chair or any other member EMB or which the FEMBOSA had previously decided to defer in previous Meetings may be included in the provisional agenda. The Chair or the Head of the host EMB may also circulate specific topics on elections and electoral management to be chosen by the member EMBs to be presented at a meeting, which shall be duly included in the provisional agenda. Such communication may be made at least two months before the meeting with the notice of the Meeting and member EMBs shall respond with topic for presentation at least one month before the Meeting and presentation document transmitted at least two weeks before the Meeting. The first item of the provisional agenda for each meeting shall be adoption of the agenda. Any item on agenda of a Meeting, consideration of which has not been completed at that meeting, shall, unless otherwise decided, automatically be included in the agenda of the next Meeting.
        Part Three- Representation
      The meetings shall be ordinarily represented by the Heads of the member EMBs, unless communicated in advance of the inability to attend the Meetings, in which case, the representative(s) nominated to attend the meetings must be made known to the host EMB at the earliest and no later than two weeks before the meeting. The Heads of the member EMBs may be accompanied by a delegation of not more than two officials, excluding the spouses of the Heads of the EMBs. The Meetings shall only be attended u the registered delegates of the member EMBs except for the Inaugural Session to which the host EMB may invite guests as deemed appropriate.
        Part Four- Chair
      The Office of the Chair of the FEMBOSA and the Forum Meetings shall be held in turn by the Heads of the member EMBs in the English alphabetical order of the names of the Member countries, with the host EMB taking over the Chair until handing over at the next Meeting. The Chair shall: Preside over the Forum Meeting. Represent the FEMBOSA, as may be required, at any regional or international forum or upon request to the FEMBOSA, lead Election Observation Teams on behalf of the FEMBOSA; and Guide and assist in the preparation of the Forum Meeting.
        Part Five- Secretariat
      The Secretariat of the FEMBOSA shall be in the host EMB, and the Head of the Secretariat of the best EMB shall be the ex-officio Secretary of the FEMBOSA Secretariat authorized to act in that capacity. The Secretary may authorize a deputy to act in his/her place. The Secretary shall be responsible for the preparation of documents required by the FEMBOSA, as well as the documentation of records of the Forum Meetings.
        Part Six- Conduct of Forum Meetings
      In the Forum Meetings, the Chair shall conduct the proceedings related to the overall matters of the FEMBOSA. The technical sessions shall be chaired in turn by all Heads of Delegations of the Member EMBs. The proposed resolutions, amendments and/or substantive motions shall normally be placed before the member EMBs in writing. Any decision on a motion or resolution in the meetings shall be by way of vote of all Heads of Delegations present and taken on the basis of unanimity.
        Part Seven- Language
      English shall be both the official and the working Language of the Fembosa and its meetings. If a Head of a member EMB is unable to address in English in the Forum Meetings, it shall be translated and interpreted in English. In this case, the said member EMB shall provide for interpretation in English. All Records, resolutions and matters related to the FEMBOSA and its meetings shall be in English.
        Part Eight- Finalisation Process of Records and Publicity
      The records of Meetings shall be made available to the member EMBs within two weeks following the conclusion of the Forum Meetings. The member EMBs shall inform the Secretary of any corrections they wish to have made in the records within a month after the records have been made available. Corrections that have been requested shall be considered approved unless the Chair is of the opinion that they are sufficiently important to be submitted in the next Meeting. In such cases, the Secretary shall communicate the opinion of the Chair in writing to all Heads of the member EMBs. The records in which no corrections have been requested in the period of time provided or which have been corrected shall be considered as approved. It shall be signed by the Chair and shall become the official record of the FEMBOSA. The official record of the Meetings, as well as the documents annexed thereto, shall be published in English as soon as possible, and circulated to the member EMBs by the Chair. The approved resolutions and records of the Meetings may be given due publicity and shared with the general public as deemed appropriately by a member EMB.
        Part Nine- Miscellaneous
      All presentations made in the Forum Meetings may be given due publicity and shared with the general public as deemed appropriate by a member EMB. The host EMB and the Secretariat shall be responsible to arrange the logistics and meet all local costs for a Meeting, unless otherwise indicated by any member EMB.

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