The Ethiopian Electoral and Political Parties /DRAFT/ Proclamation

CHAPTER THREE DOCUMENTS OF POLITICAL PARTIES
71. Document of a Political Party
1.A political party shall have the following basic documents: a. memorandum of association;
b. political program;
c. by – laws,
d. documents related to ownership, property and revenue and expenditure.
2.A political party that intends to amend the documents listed under sub-article 1 (a) (b) (c) above, shall first notify the Board of its intention. The Board shall, as appropriate, accept and process the request for amendment in accordance with the provisions of Article 68.
72. Memorandum of Association of a Political Party
1.Individuals who desire to establish a political party must have a memorandum of association in which they declare the establishment of the type of political party they want to organize.
2.A memorandum of association shall include the following particulars: a. the full name of the party and its abbreviation;
b. the emblem of the party;
c. the objectives of the party;
d. the party’s assets and source of income;
e. the day and year of establishment of the party;
f. the addresses of the head office and branch offices of the party; g. the procedures of issuing the by – laws.
3. The memorandum of association of a political party must have been adopted at the general meeting held to establish the party.
73. Program of Political Party
Every political party must have a program in which the political belief it pursues as its objective is formulated and adopted at the party’s general meeting.
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74. By – Laws of Political Party
1.Every political party must have its own by laws. Such by – laws shall include the following particulars:
a. conditions for admission and expulsion of members;
b. details of the rights and duties of member;
c. details of the various organs of the party, the procedure for their election, their tenure
and description of their respective functions;
d. types of membership fees and payment structure as well as the members’ participation level in the party’s activities;
e. the party’s procedures of convening meetings and passing decisions;
f. details of measures of procedure and code of conduct applicable to members;
g. a stipulation that the quorum for the party’s general meeting shall be constituted by at
least 5 percent of the minimum number of founding members required in this Proclamation;
h. a stipulation that the party’s general meeting shall be held at least once every three years;
i. organizational structure of the party and positions within the party including the establishment and functions of the party’s branch offices,
j. list of matters that require the decision of the party’s general meeting;
k. the course of action and decision making process for forming a merger, coalition, or front with other political parties, as well as for the dissolution of the political party;
l. The procedure for the nomination of party members for national and other various level elections;
m. The party’s human resource, financial and audit process;
n. The party’s asset administration policy, income mobilization process as well as an explanation of the person or section of the party mandated to decide on such matters;
o. The procedure for resolving political party’s internal disputes; and
p. details as to the equality of votes between every member of the political party.
2.Any by-law of political party shall not have the effect of abridging the rights of a member of the political party guaranteed to him as citizen or of releasing him from duties imposed up on him as a citizen.
3.The by-law of every political party shall stipulate that the election of its leadership and other officials at all levels must be conducted in a transparent, free and fair manner, where secrecy of the ballot is protected.
4.Every political party when conducting election for leadership position shall ensure gender balance consideration.
5.The by – law of every political party shall be drawn consistently with the provisions of Article 75 and from Article 86 to Article 90 of this Proclamation.
6.When dispute occurs between members of a political party around the party by-law implementation and other related issues, the Board is notified of this complaint; the Board shall establish a panel of experts that would investigate and provide a decision on the matter. Particulars shall be determined by a directive issued by the Board.
CHAPTER FOUR RIGHT OF POLITICAL PARTY
75. Independence of a Political Party with Respect to Its Own Affairs
Every political party:
1.shall determine in its by – laws the procedures of adopting and amending its political program and by – laws as well as holding meetings;
2.in accordance with its by – laws, shall have leading organs to direct, decide and implement its political activities.
76. Establishing Branch Offices
1.Every political party may establish branch offices anywhere within the country for the purpose of carrying out its political activities.
2.A political party that has branch offices at the national, regional and sub-regional level shall stipulate in its by-law, the relationship between various branches and their power structure.
77. Exemption from Income Tax
1.Any political party shall not be liable to pay any kind of income tax on income collected from its members and supporters.
2.Political party does not have the obligation to collect and transfer to the government income tax payable in accordance with the law in respect to its employees’ salaries.
78. Duty to Submit Report
1. A political party registered in accordance with this Proclamation shall:
a.Submit an annual report on the number of its members, their gender and age distribution and their place of abode;
b.At the request of the Board, submit a document confirming compliance with the minimum number of members required and other standards set under this Proclamation;
c.Where it intends to convene a meeting to form a front, merger, or coalition, notify the Board to attend the meeting 30 days in advance;
d.submit a written report annually or within a timeline determined by the Board, on the party’s assets and liabilities certified, as appropriate, by an auditor or a financial advisor and signed by the leader;
e.the report provided under sub – article 1(d) of this Article shall include the income and property sources of the political party.
2. The Board shall give a one month warning for a political party that does not comply with the obligations under sub – article 1 to fulfill such conditions with in such period, then after the Board may take necessary measures pursuant to Article 98 of this Proclamation.
3. Where a political party or a leader of political party informed in writing to the Board as to the property and debt in accordance with this Article has been found untrue, without prejudice to the provisions of Article 98 of this Proclamation it shall be liable under the appropriate provisions of the Criminal Code.
4. Where a political party has not given information and explanations as are required by the provision of Article 68 (4) of this Proclamation, it shall be liable in accordance with Article 98of this Proclamation.
5. A political party that established branch office in accordance with Article 76 of this Proclamation shall notify in writing the branch office address and leaders or representatives of the office to the Board within one month of establishing the branch office.
79. Duty to Provide Information
1.A political party has an obligation under this Proclamation to give a written information certified documents when requested by Board.
2.A political party convenes a general assembly, it has to notify 30 days in advance for the Board to attend the assembly.
3.Where a political party required to give information pursuant to sub article (1) of this Article is unwilling to provide such information or gives intentionally untrue information, the Board shall take measures under Article 98(1) (d) of this Proclamation.
80.Notification of Members of Leadership
1. Every political party shall notify the Board within one month, when it elects new leading members.
2.When a political party loses members of leadership for various reasons and such number is below 50%+1, the party shall elect in their place another members within 30 days. The party shall inform this incident within a month to the Board
81. Keeping Documents of Political Parties
1.Every political party shall have the duty to keep proper record of the matters provided under chapter 8 sub-section 2 of this Proclamation such as, books of account, certificates of donation, ownership evidence documents.
2.Notwithstanding the provision of sub article (1) of this Article, based on the reasons of lack of space and manpower, books of accounts aged over 10 years may be disposed.
3.Without prejudice to sub article (1) and (2) of this Article, every political party shall keep other documents properly.
82. Auditor of Political Party
1.Every political party must keep properly its income, expenditure and assets and liabilities records and documents. The Board will issue a directive to determine the titles and details that these documents must contain.
2.Unless stated otherwise in this Proclamation, every political party shall commission within three months of the end of the budget year, an external auditor whose professional competency approved by the mandated body, a financial expert who has taken a professional oath, or board appointed auditor to conduct a review of its finances and submit to the Board an audit report .
3.Where its financial position for the budget year preceding the one to be audited is less than ETB 300,000 (three hundred thousand) the political party can assign a financial expert who has taken a professional oath to conduct the annual audit and submit the report to the Board.
4.Where its financial position for the budget year preceding the one to be audited is more than 200,000 (two hundred thousand) ETB, the political party can engage a certified external auditor or an auditor assigned by the Board to conduct the annual audit and submit the report to the Board.
5.The external auditor, provided in sub – article 2 and 3 of this Article, shall be appointed by the political party executive organ.
6. As appropriate, the Board can assign the chief auditor to investigate financial documents of any political party.
83. Right of Auditor or Financial Advisor
The auditor or finance expert examining a political party’s finances has the right to request for, and examine any document related to the assets and properties of the political party.
84. A Person who can’t be appointed as Political Party Auditor or Serve as Accountant
Whosoever served or is serving a political party in the capacity of a lawyer, an employee, a board member, or in any manner that may cause conflict of interest, shall not be engaged as the political party auditor or financial expert.
85. Organization of Work of Appointed Auditor of Political Party
1.A political party’s auditor or financial expert and the professionals engaged in the work shall perform their respective work ethically, honestly and independently.
2.The audit report of the auditor or the financial expert investigation report shall be submitted to the political party leaders in writing.
3.The certificate of professional competence of the auditor or financial expert shall be attached to the audit report to be submitted by a political party.
86. Designation and Emblem of Political Party
1.The designation of any political party shall not be similar to or create confusion with the designation of another political party and shall be the sole designation of the party.
2.The emblem and flag of the party:
a. Shall not be similar with the emblems and flags of other political parties;
b.Shall not create hatred and conflict among nation, nationalities, race, religion; c.Shall not convey messages of war and other unlawful activities;
d.Shall not be similar with the flag or emblem of Ethiopia or with those of the various international organizations or with the symbols of religion organizations;
e. Shall not be against ethics or public morality or other similar public interests.

CHAPTER FIVE
RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS OF MEMBERS OF A POLITICAL PARTY
87. Right of Participation
Any member of a political party shall have, in accordance with the by-laws of the party, the right to participate in the meetings of the party, to express freely his views and comments, to vote and to elect or to be elected.
88. Membership Dues
A member of a political party may pay membership dues periodically to the political party in accordance with the by-laws or decisions of the political party.
89. Expulsion from Membership
1. A member of a political party may be expelled from membership to be determined in accordance with the by-law of the political party.
2.A member aggrieved by the party’s decision to expel him, may file a petition to the Federal First Instance Court that has the jurisdiction or to Regional High Court within three months from the date of the notification of such decision.
90. Membership
1.Any political party shall have members including the founders and members admitted after the formation of the party.
2.Membership of a political party may not be devolved by succession or by any other manner to another person, and shall be limited to its members.
3.A member of a political party may at any time withdraw membership.
4.The by-laws of a political party may not contradict the provisions of this Chapter.

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