Rwandans seeking to represent their country in the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA), have to submit their candidature from November 7-11, according to instructions from the National Electoral Commission (NEC). This deadline applies to prospective candidates from the National Youth Council, National Women Council, and National Council of Persons with Disabilities. These instructions are related to the election of Rwanda Members of EALA, and were published on the Ministry of Justice’s website on November 1. Reception of applications is done at the headquarters (office) of every national council, during work hours – from 7 am to 5 pm – or via emails of those councils. The national council submits candidates to NEC within two days after receiving them from applicants. For a political organisation or coalition of political organisations that want their members to represent their country in EALA, they have to forward to NEC, not beyond December 2, 2022, the list and curriculum vitae of their candidates, accompanied by the minutes of the meeting that approved that list. This also has to bear the names and signature of the high-level representative of the political party or the coalition of political organisations. Charles Munyaneza, Executive Secretary of NEC, told The New Times that campaigns for the prospective Rwanda Members of EALA candidates shall be held between November 25 and December 2, 2022. He indicated that the election of the candidates from the National Youth Council, National Women Council and National Council of Persons with Disabilities will take place on December 5, 2022. Munyaneza said that the election of the nine Rwandan Members of EALA will be held after December 8, at Rwanda’s Parliament (with the presence of both chambers). The curriculum vitae of all [the elected] candidates will be sent to Parliament on December 8, 2022. Members of EALA are elected for a five-year term. The 4th EALA Assembly – the current one – started in 2017 and its term will end on December 17, 2022, after which the 5th EALA Assembly will begin. So far, EALA has 54 elected members (MPs) – with nine from each of the six EAC Partner States (Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda). This is the case because its seventh (and newest) member – the Democratic Republic of the Congo (RDC) – has not yet elected its members to this EAC Parliament. Meanwhile, it is expected that DRC will also elect its members to the 5th EALA Assembly, which could bring its membership to 63. According to the organic law governing election of Rwanda Members of EALA published in the Official Gazette on August 29, 2022, Rwanda members of EALA originate from categories, namely political organisations represented in the Parliament’s Chamber of Deputies, National Youth Council, National Women Council, and the National Council of Persons with Disabilities. The law provides that at least 30 per cent of the nine Rwanda Members of EALA must be women. Criteria NEC’s instructions state that each candidature must be accompanied by full names of the candidate that match those on their national identity (ID) card; and identification indicating their date of birth, place of birth, profession, and residence. Other identifications are a birth certificate that was issued not less than three months ago by a competent authority, a photocopy of their national ID card; a criminal record which was issued within not more than three months ago by a competent organ, indicating that the applicant was never irrevocably sentenced [by court] to an imprisonment penalty (equal to or exceeding six months). They also include a copy of a notarised degree, for those who have them; a medical certificate issued by a competent doctor, confirming the candidature’s disability. This applies to the candidates from the National Council of Persons with Disabilities. Still, a candidate has to include an application letter on which they appended their signature or fingerprint, which has also to affirm that the documents they provided in their file are genuine. Election venues The election of candidates provided by the National Women Council are held at national level, while that of candidates provided by the National Youth Council take place at every province and the City of Kigali. The elections of candidates from the National Council of Persons with Disabilities are held at district level, at sites set by the NEC. The electorate Candidates provided by national councils – namely the National Youth Council, National Women Council, and National Council of Persons with Disabilities – are elected by the general assembly of each council at national level. Number of candidates, allotted members for each category The law stipulates that each political organisation, coalition of political organisations represented in the Parliament, the Chamber of Deputies, which so wishes submits not more than three candidates among whom at least one is female. Each National Council presents not more than three candidates, among whom at least one is female. According to the law, each category in which Rwanda Members of EALA are elected is allotted a number of members, with political organisations accounting for six; while the three national councils get one, each.