1,000 Bahrainis to train to be future MPs
Manama, March 18, 2014
More than 1,000 Bahrainis will be trained to become legislators ahead of October's parliamentary and municipal council elections.
The workshops are being conducted in Arabic by the Bahrain Institute for Political Development (BIPD), which aims to help candidates understand the legislative body and educate campaign managers on the electoral process, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
BIPD executive director Dr Yaser Al Alawi said they have received an overwhelming response from potential candidates.
"We are providing a road map for future MPs, municipal councillors, campaign managers and election process observers through these training programmes that are being conducted by experts from Bahrain and the region such as Jordan and Egypt," he said.
"BIPD works hard to increase the societal awareness about the right concepts and practices of democracy and civil society.
"We also train the society on political, constitutional and human rights aspects through these training programmes for improved functioning of parliamentary life."
The free programmes, which are held six times a month at the institute's headquarters in Umm Al Hassam, will accommodate 40 people at a time and will run until the end of the year.
Dr Al Alawi said that they were not expecting all participants to file their candidacy for the elections, but anticipated a large turnout.
"Some of our training programmes focus on how to run election campaigns, role of political societies in polls to even courses on obstacles women candidates may face in the election process," he added.
"Based on the number of people registering with us for the training programmes including women, we expect a large number of people contesting for the upcoming parliament and municipal elections.
"We are training citizens to be MPs, municipal councillors, election campaign managers, supervisors and even educating people as part of the institute's mandate to spread political awareness."
Dr Al Alawi said special training sessions for municipal council candidates will also be held, starting next month.
"They will focus on social media and how candidates can use this form of modern communication to boost their campaign," he explained.
"It will also help improve their social media skills and to communicate with the journalists."
A symposium on election violations will also be held in September followed by a session on the appeals process if candidates are unsatisfied with poll results. - TradeArabia News Service