In December, NIMD gathered the secretary generals of political parties from across Jordan for training as part of the EU programme called “The EU Support to Jordanian Democratic Institutions & Development project (EU-JDID)”. The 2-day session, entitled “Election Manifesto Development”, offered participants lessons in how to develop distinctive, policy-based manifestos.
Manifestos are a crucial tool for political parties as they offer voters a clear indication of the party’s priorities and how it intends to govern. As multiparty competition develops over time, these documents streamline campaigns and allow parties to distinguish themselves from others based on their policies and priorities. They are therefore a staple for healthy multiparty democracy; they give the voting public an insight into the difference their vote will make.
The training, which was held under the patronage of the Jordanian Ministry of Political and Parliamentary Affairs (MoPPA), was delivered by Jerome Scheltens, a Dutch expert in political parties. With Jordan’s next round of parliamentary elections scheduled for September 2020, this opportunity for parties to identify their needs in terms of manifesto development has come at the right time.
Over the two days, Mr. Scheltens took participants through topics such as how to convey their party’s institutional priorities, how internal policy choices influence external relations, and how to refine their manifesto drafting process. Each party was able to identify its particular needs in terms of manifesto development and what capacities they wanted to develop ahead of the 2020 elections.
This has set the stage for more workshops and close cooperation between the project and political parties to further develop their capacities through training and capacity support.
The EU-JDID programme is financed by the European Union.