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Election Commission of Nepal is a constitutional Election Management Body in Nepal. Constitution of Nepal has made arrangements about the Election Commission in Section 24, article 245 to 247. The constitution has embraced the competitive multiparty democratic system, adult franchise and periodic elections as fundamental guiding principles of democracy. Depending on the constitutional provisions, the Commission has the responsibility to conduct the elections of different tires – federal, provincial and local bodies – as per the stipulated electoral systems.

The Election Commission has the responsibility to conduct, supervise, direct and control the elections of the President, the Vice President, Members of Federal Parliament, Provincial Assemblies and Local Bodies. The Election Commission is also responsible for preparing the voters’ list for the purpose of election. The Commission can also hold referendum on subject of national importance as per the Constitution and Federal laws.

There are five Commissioners including a Chief Election Commissioner. The Chief Election Commissioner acts as the Chairperson of the Election Commission. The Commissioners are appointed by the President on the recommendation of the Constitutional Council and their terms is of six years from the date of appointment. However, if they get the age of 65 years they retire earlier.

Nepalese citizen possessing qualifications such as holding a Bachelor's Degree, not being a member of any political party immediately before the appointment, attained the age of forty five, possessing high moral character is eligible to be appointed as the Chief Election Commissioner or an Election Commissioner.

Structurally, Election Commission has its Secretariat led by the Secretary of the Government of Nepal. The Secretariat comprises four divisions and nine sections in the headquarters, and there are 77 District Election Offices across the country. The Secretariat implements the policy as decided by the Commission.

According to the Second Strategic Planning of the Election Commission, its vision is

Strengthening the Election Commission as a competent institution for electoral excellence.

Similarly, the mission is

To conduct elections in a professional, efficient, transparent, and credible manner as mandated by the Constitution.

Its activities are based on the following principles:

·         Independence

·         Impartiality

·         Inclusivity

·         Transparency

·         Service orientation

·         Professional integrity

·         Responsibility and accountability

·         Participatory

·         Credibility

·         Cost-effectiveness

·         Pro-activeness and innovation

The strategic pillars and goals of the Commission are as follows:

Pillar I. Institutional development of Election Commission

Goal 1: Election Commission institutional capacity is strengthened.

Goal 2: The planning process is strengthened.

Goal 3: Electoral legislation is reformed to match with new Constitution.

Pillar II. Organization and capacity building

Goal 4: The physical infrastructure of district election offices is improved.

Goal 5: The capacity of human resources of the Commission is enhanced.

Goal 6: Engagement with media is strengthened.

Pillar III. Registration and election technology

Goal 7: Voter registration of eligible voters is ensured.

Goal 8: Political party registration is more efficiently regulated and managed.

Goal 9: Election management improved by using information technology.

Pillar IV. Electoral education and organizational outreach

Goal 10: Voter education is improved.

Goal 11: The Electoral Education and Information Centre (EEIC) is upgraded.

Goal 12: Electoral Research Institute is created.

Goal 13: Gender and Social Inclusion (GESI) at all levels of election management is ensured.

Goal 14: Coordination and partnership with electoral stakeholders is strengthened.

Pillar V. Logistic management and electoral operations

Goal 15: Electoral operations are made user friendly to both voters and electoral officers.

Goal 16: Logistics management is made more efficient.

Goal 17: Elections risk management system is implemented.

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