Electoral Campaign: First Part of Public Funding Available

Candidates or their representative are invited to go and sign the campaign funds at the Ministry of Territorial Administration today, September 19, 2018.

The Minister of Territorial Administration (MINAT), Paul Atanga Nji has invited the nine candidates for the October 7, 2018 presidential election or their representatives to come to the Political Affairs Department of MINAT today, Wednesday, September 19, 2018 and sign the first part of the public funding for the election campaign.

Minister Atanga Nji in a press release said the first part of the public funding of the campaign will be shared equally to all the candidates. This is in conformity with Section 284 (1) of the Electoral Code which states that, “The State shall contribute to the funding of election campaigns by defraying some expenses of political parties or candidates.”

Talking specifically about the election of the President of the Republic, Section 286 (1) of the Electoral Code provides that, “Funds earmarked for the funding of election campaign for presidential election, shall be divided into two equal parts to candidates as follows: a first part, after the publication of the list of candidates, allotted equally to the various candidates; a second, served after the proclamation of results to candidates with more than 5 per cent of votes cast, proportionately to the results obtained.”

As the candidates go to MINAT for the funding, they have to know that, “Any candidate who withdraws before the polls or who does not participate effectively in the election campaign shall be required to refund the totality of the amount received in respect of the first-part,” Sub-section 2 of Section 286 of the Electoral Code warns.

The disbursement of the public campaign funds will be a great relief to many candidates who have been making frantic efforts to raise money for the campaign that officially opens on Saturday, September 22, 2018. The public funds will in particular, boost the campaign package of incumbent President Paul Biya, candidate of the ruling Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement (CPDM).

This is because CPDM members and supporters both at home and in the Diaspora have for some time now been engaged in fundraising ceremonies to sponsor the campaign of their candidate Paul Biya. Other candidates had also devised diverse methods of raising funds not only for campaigns but also for all the phases of the election.

The raising of funds for the electoral process are regulated by law. As such, Section 278 (1) of the Electoral Code states clearly that, “It shall be forbidden for any political party to receive subsidies or funding from foreign persons, organisations, powers and/or States.”

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