Friday, September 11, 2015

Why we celebrate International Day of Democracy

Back in 2007 the United Nations General Assembly made a resolution to observe the International Day of Democracy on 15 September - the day when the Universal Declaration on Democracy was adopted. 

Today, we are glad to join the UN, member states and organisations around the world in promoting and upholding the principles of democracy. In Smartmatic, as we stated in our website and core values, “We believe that the free world is moving toward a more participatory model of democracy, where in addition to periodic elections, there will and should be a more continuous flow of opinions between citizens and governments.” This principle leads us now, more than ever, to celebrate the 2015 theme for Day of Democracy: “Space for Civil Society”. 

The UN Secretary-General's message for this year notes that “Civil society is the oxygen of democracy. The role of civil society has never been more important.” Furthermore, as the world prepares to shortly implement a new development agenda (September 2015), Ban Ki-moon reminds us that “yet, for civil society, freedom to operate is diminishing — or even disappearing. On this Day, let us recall that progress and civic participation go hand in hand.” 

On this Day, we reaffirm together with the UN that “democracy is a universal value based on the freely expressed will of people to determine their own political, economic, social and cultural systems and their full participation in all aspects of their lives. And while democracies share common features, there is no single model of it.” 

Therefore, this Day of Democracy, let us call the attention to three fundamental topics in which we believe we can help transform civil society: 



1. Elections: As the leading election company, we are committed to developing, promoting and providing services that guarantee transparency, efficiency and integrity in elections. Our voting systems keep on successfully supporting just this. 

2. Technology: At times when the debate on technology and democracy gets fierier, and we hear experts still argue about why “the advance of new communication technologies in the past fifteen years have not produced any overall advance of democracy in the world”; we raise the flag of our company vision with pride: “To move civilization forward with technology that has a profound social impact.” We acknowledge that technology alone does not solve all the challenges of democracy building, yet we firmly believe that engaged citizens and efficient government administrators stand a better chance! 

3. Education for freedom and peace: We envision a society where citizens have an education system that allows their societies to become fairer and more transparent and in which they can use technology to better communicate and join forces to demand more from their governments.

Particularly, we believe in education for freedom and peace as they are the spirited pillars of democratic systems.Therefore, this is the time to work together toward prommoting democracy and, this is the Day to create awareness and plan actions. Let us celebrate it together.

The Smartmatic Communications Team 

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