KIGALI - The National Electoral Commission (NEC) has so far collected Rwf3.5 bn of the total funds needed for the preparation of the forthcoming Presidential election slated for August.
According to NEC, the elections are expected to cost an estimated Rwf 6.5bn.
During an interview with The New Times, the Executive Secretary of NEC, Charles Munyaneza, said that the finances came from both government and development partners.
He said that the funds are meant to help in preparing voters’ lists, civic education on elections, procurement of electoral materials and other administrative costs that will include hiring of vehicles to be used in the electoral process.
The government’s funds, he said, were disbursed to the commission during the previous financial year.
“We now have to wait for the 2010/2011 budget where we expect to receive the remaining installment from the government,” Munyaneza said.
Among the donors include the British Department for International Development (DfID) which pledged £1m, the European Union (EU), The Netherlands and Swedish governmenst.
“With the exception from DfID which has already given us half of their pledge, other donors are yet to honor their promises. But we expect all the donors to have honored their pledge before the end of April,” he said.
He added that they expect the remaining part of the government funds to be released by July.
Meanwhile, the official revealed that the voters’ registration process will be carried out in two more phases in March and June to register voters who missed out on the previous one.
Many eligible voters, especially those in towns are said to have missed last year’s first phase which recorded less turn up, according to NEC.
“Everyone who missed the first registration phase still has a chance to register. We believe within these two phases, all eligible voters will register since we have started sensitizing the public.”
According to Munyaneza, the number of voters is also expected to increase by 31.7 percent from 3,948,749 voters in 2003 polls to 5.2m in this year.
“We have everything on track now and we believe this year’s elections will register a big turn up,” Munyaneza said.