A workshop about “The Right to Vote and to Be Elected” was carried-out by MUSAWA, in cooperation with the Palestinian Human Rights Defenders (PHRDs) Network and Aqraba’s municipality in Nablus. The workshop was held in Akraba, and it was attended by 18 male youngsters who live in the village.
Mainly, the workshop aimed at spreading the culture of human rights in marginalized areas, introducing the community to the role and objectives of the PHRDs Network to help expand the network by adding new individuals and organizations to its membership, raising legal awareness among community members, and empowering youth in terms of their right to vote and to be elected.
The workshop was facilitated by Yasmeen Yaeesh, Aseel Abu-Kishek, Alaa’ Bani Fadel, and Tal’at Zyadeh; all of whom are members of the PHRDs Network.
Several topics were discussed throughout the workshop: introducing the elections and their importance; defining what a voter means and the conditions for registering in the electoral register; the duties of voters; what are voters prohibited from doing; the crimes that occur during the voting process and the related punishments; the right of the illiterate and disabled to vote and to be elected; defining what an elect/candidate means and what are the requirements for election; the electoral rolls and quota system; the participation of women, the illiterate and disabled in political life and elections.
The facilitators referred to Law No. (10) Of 2005 regarding electing the councils of local bodies, the amended Palestinian Basic Law Of 2003. During the workshop, the head of Madama’s village council, Mr. Tal’at Zyadeh, spoke about his personal experience as a youngster in charge of the village council in its last round.
At the end of the workshop, the participants gave the following recommendations: expanding the range of campaigns and awareness workshops on elections in the presence of representatives of monitoring bodies and the local elections committee, and developing programs to empower youth and women in marginalized areas.
This workshop comes as part of a project to empower Palestinian human rights defenders, conducted by MUSAWA in both the West Bank and Gaza, with the support of the European Union.