Welcome to Fredah Joses, our new IREX Community Solutions Program Leader from Papua New Guinea!
As an Assistant Election Manager (AEM) for Morobe Province with the Papua New Guinea Electoral Commission (PNGEC), Fredah has experience developing and promoting a culture of democracy in the areas of electoral management, democracy education, and conflict prevention. Upon returning to Papua New Guinea (PNG) Fredah plans to establish an accredited democracy education program for both in- and out-of-school youth.
Fredah will be working on mulitple voter education and outreach projects for the November election. Contact us if you would like to have her come to your League as a guest speaker. Fredah is pictured above with LWVC Board Director, Martha Cox at a recent board meeting.
Post a welcome message to her on our Facebook page.
Read more about Fredah in her own words:
I've had the privilege of working with the PNG Electoral Commission (PNGEC) as the Assistant Election Manager (AEM) for Morobe Province since the 2012 National General Elections. The post (AEM) itself is one of 22 others for each province, created with support from the (then) Australian aid-funded Electoral Support Program (ESP3) as part of PNGEC's vision to address several issues within the agency, and in essence PNG -- one of which was/is to encourage greater women and youth participation in elections/electoral administration, leadership, and politics. I play an administrative and technical assistant role in election administration, coordination, and delivery of democratic elections in one of the largest and geographically, socio-culturally complex provinces in PNG. I’ve been involved in various capacities as Returning Officer (RO), and Assistant Returning Officer (ARO) for several provincial, national, and international electoral duties, such as the highly publicized and controversial 2014 Madang Open By-Election Judicial Recount. I’ve helped to pilot the implementation of several new election initiatives, such as the Temporary Election Workers (TEW) Database, the decentralization and upkeep of the Electoral Roll, successfully completing the 2017 National General Elections for Morobe, assisted in preparations for the coming Local Level Government Elections (LLGE), and the conduct of the 2015 Autonomous Region of Bougainville Government Elections.
My role allows me to interact with numerous stakeholders every day (such as government, the media, civil society, and faith-based organisations), particularly since I coordinate electoral awareness and training, and sit on 2 separate multi-stakeholder committees that assist in elections and election-related matters: the Provincial Elections Steering Committee (PESC), and Provincial Awareness Steering Committee (PASC). I am a member of PNGEC’s Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (GESI) Strategic Working Group, and the 2022 PNG Women In Parliament Working Group (a joint project with the United Nations Development Program to improve and strengthen the participation of women in politics and elections). I am a semi-accredited Building Resources In Democracy, Governance and Elections (BRIDGE) facilitator in the Pacific Islands, Australia, and New Zealand Election Administrators (PIANZEA) Network, and a member of the Commonwealth Election Professionals (CEP) network under the Commonwealth Secretariat. I also coordinate provincial engagement with international development partners, such as the United Nations, the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), the Commonwealth Secretariat, and the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC).
Outside of work with PNGEC, I’m also involved in varying capacities with youth and community development organisations, as the Lions Club (PNG), University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG) Peer Educators, The Voice Incorporated, PNG Youth Alliance against HIV and AIDS (PNG YAHA), the UPNG Student Representative Council, the Oxfam International Youth Partnerships (OIYP) 2010-2013, and the One Young World (OYW) international youth network. Additionally, I co-founded a network of young Papua New Guinean professionals called Brain Contain, which seeks to address the issue of “brain drain” in PNG, by (essentially) linking knowledgeable Papua New Guineans to local communities to enable dialogue and collaboration in addressing specific local issues, as conflict resolution, to water and sanitation access. I have also cofounded an online platform for the promotion and sharing of information on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), called “Now for Future.”
Joining PNGEC, I have further recognised the importance of engaging, maintaining, and enhancing the participation of (particularly local) women and other marginalised groups in the process of leadership, elections and thus politics, either as electoral administrators, voters, candidates, or lobbyists. I believe true sustainable positive change in enabling such a result will only eventuate if people are correctly, relatively, and consistently informed/educated in civic and electoral matters. Thus, I am humbled and excited to be working with, and learning from the League of Women Voters of California, in Sacramento, particularly in preparation to the 2018 Midterm Elections.
Thank you everyone, and I look forward to the next few months and beyond with all of you.