By Taiwo Okanlawon
The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) has postponed the sixth general elections to an undetermined date.
Chairperson of NEBE, Birtukan Mideksa, made this known while addressing journalists about the development on Saturday.
Mideksa said that repeated extensions of voters’ registration dates, delay in nominating and training of electoral staff as well as delay in printing and distribution of ballots have forced a postponement of the sixth general elections.
Mideksa said the new voting date would be announced after consultations with a wide array of electoral stakeholders.
The NEBE had previously extended the voter registration period at least two times, citing logistical and security challenges.
It had tentatively set June 5 as the date for the sixth general elections.
Earlier on Saturday, the NEBE announced it had registered more than 36.2 million potential voters out of a potential voters’ number of around 50 million.
Under Ethiopia’s parliamentary government system, the Prime Minister, who is the highest authority of the land, is selected from the party that wins the most seats at the federal parliament level and will be sworn in after the parliamentary vote.
NEBE had earlier announced that a parliamentary election will hold on June 5, 2021.
Africa’s second most populous nation has a federal system and 10 regional governments, many of whom have border disputes or face low-level unrest.
Tigray held its own elections in September 2020 in defiance of the federal government, which declared the polls illegal.
The election board said its calendar for 2021 does not include an election in Tigray.