Media Center

Press Release


  March 10, 2003

An Organization of American States (OAS) meeting in Panama City this week will bring together senior elections officials from 20 member states to examine the challenges facing the Americas in the area of electoral technology.

The Inter-American Meeting of Electoral Authorities, scheduled for March 12 to 14, will also review the experience with electronic voting in Brazil as well as horizontal cooperation through the OAS to bring the technology on stream in Paraguay.

The agenda includes as well the experience with electronic voting and horizontal cooperation in Europe, the question of technological adaptation, and awareness by citizens and political organizations, with an emphasis on transparency, security and confidence in electoral systems.

Specific topics to be addressed include the implementation of electronic voting, technological advances by country and their impact on election organization, the social face of technology, and the advances, successes and goals of computerization procedures being applied to election organizing.

The OAS is sponsoring the upcoming Inter-American Meeting of Electoral Officials through the Unit for the Promotion of Democracy’s Area of Strengthening Electoral Processes and Systems. UPD Executive Coordinator Elizabeth Spehar will inaugurate the meeting, along with the President of Panama’s Electoral Tribunal, Eduardo Valdés Escoffery.

A delegation from Puerto Rico and a number of recognized electoral experts are also expected to share information on the current challenges and progress involved in organizing elections.

Other invitees include the Carter Center, United States Agency for International Development (USAID), International Republican Institute, Center for Electoral Assistance and Promotion, National Democratic Institute (NDI), the UN and the European Union.

Reference: E-053/03