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Bringing Unity, Integrity and Legitimacy to Democracy (BUILD)

Somalia polling station
Citizens gathered outside a polling station in Somaliland

While Somalia is moving towards more inclusive institutions and systems, most citizens have never participated in a direct election.

Bringing Unity, Integrity and Legitimacy to Democracy (BUILD) aims to support electoral and political processes across Somalia, including Somaliland, by fostering increased citizen participation; building the capacity of election management bodies (EMBs) and other relevant government bodies to administer credible elections; and supporting the development of issue-based and viable political parties.


BUILD will work with a range of Somali institutions and organizations to incrementally increase awareness of civic rights and responsibilities while establishing and strengthening key political structures to facilitate and support citizen participation.

Specifically, BUILD will:

  •  Encourage citizen participation in political and electoral processes through building civil society organizations’ capacity to inform citizens and monitor elections and political processes; and by improving media capacity to cover and disseminate information on these processes;
  • Develop the capacity of EMBs and other relevant government bodies to administer credible elections and political processes; and
  • Support political parties to promote inclusion and contribute to peaceful elections and political processes.

BUILD will issue small grants to local organizations, strengthen and expand existing civil society networks, develop the capacity of local civil society organizations (CSOs) to monitor and evaluate elections, train CSO partners on conflict monitoring, and support non-governmental elections.  It will also work towards strengthening the internal capacity of and provide technical advice to EMBs in order to organize elections, conduct political skills training programs for political parties, and train political party agents to observe elections.


With support from USAID, BUILD anticipates that:

  • Citizens will be more aware, engaged, and confident in political and electoral processes;
  • Electoral stakeholders, particularly EMBs, government agencies, political parties, and media, will engage with greater integrity, accountability, transparency, and inclusivity in electoral processes throughout the electoral cycle;
  • CSOs will facilitate engagement between citizens and government on constitutional and legislative processes pertaining to elections; and
  • Members of all clans, women, youth, and other marginalized groups will understand their roles in the electoral process and have access to safe and secure opportunities for participation.