IFES Asia Programs

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IFES actions and programs in Asia


Corruption and campaign violence are the hallmarks of politics in the Philippines, and several official and quasi-governmental organizations have sprung up to monitor elections and corruption in the 2007 elections. Both types of organizations are receiving financial and consulting assistance from IFES and USAID. Even with this outside assistance it is widely expected that both corruption and violence will be rampant in the period leading up to the elections. The electoral campaign also coincides with a wave of repression that has seen a senior opponent killed and the wounding or imprisonment of scores of others. [1]



In Dec 2006, an announcement revealed that IFES was involved in the elections for Aceh -- which would determine its status in Indonesia. NB: Exxon Mobil seeks to develop oil and gas fields in the area.(Source viewed 8 Dec 2006).




The EU sparked a row about its proposal to monitor the 23 Dec 2007 elections in Thailand. There has been public discontent with the proposed role for the EU monitors and their number. The same article reveals that IFES will also monitor the elections and provide long-term technical advice on the mechanics of forthcoming elections. In particular,

Mr Sutthipol pointed out that the International Foundation for Election Systems (IFES) has agreed to observe the Dec 23 election in accordance with the terms set by Thailand. Yesterday the EC secretary-general met Catherine Barnes, the IFES project director for Thailand. He said the IFES expressed concern about elections in Thailand, which have been plagued with vote-buying, and that the forthcoming poll could also be marred by electoral fraud. The IFES had also come up with suggestions to tackle electoral fraud in the long term. They include the strict enforcement of election law, promotion of the role of non-governmental organisations and the public in the electoral process, and the cooperation of political parties which must be made to obey the election law.[3]


  1. Jeannette I. Andrade And Maricel V. Cruz, Dirty cash to fuel 2007 poll violence, Manila Times, 24 January 2007. (Accessed: 1 Sept 2007)
  2. Hari Roka, Nepali democracy and assistance without interference, HardNews, June 2006.
  3. EU softens stance on poll watch, Bangkok Post, 31 August 2007.