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The Future of Democracy in Africa

Democracy in much of Africa is currently constrained from delivering on its development potential for three reasons. Firstly, governance capacity is lacking. Secondly, the quality of electoral democracy is thin. Finally, neo patrimonialism undermine…

Agreeing To Disagree In The Interest Of Ghana

"Embedded in Ghana's multiparty democracy ushered in by the fourth Republican Constitution, 1992 is recognition of the idea that not all Ghanaians will share in the same political ideology on issues regarding how the country should be governed. And…

Dealing with Winner takes All Politics in Ghana : The Case of National Development Planning

"During 2011, the Constitution Review Commission (CRC), recommended a national development plan that should be entrenched in the constitution and binding on successive governments. While the government accepted the need for a long-term plan, the rec…

Implementing The Presidential (Transition) Act: Lessons, Challenges And The Way Forward

"The post-2012 election period presented the first test for implementing major aspects of the Presidential (Transition) Act, 2012 (Act 845). This paper undertakes a preliminary assessment of how the law has been implemented. The approach taken invol…

Enhancing The Decentralisation Programme: District Assemblies And Sub-Structures As Partners In Governance

"Ten years ago, Ghana embarked on a major programme of local government reform and decentralisation. Ten years ago in 1989, the phased programme of District Assembly elections was concluded and the Assemblies inaugurated. Ten years ago, the then PND…

Indigenous Knowledge Systems And Good Governance In Ghana: The Traditional Akan Socio-Political Example

"This paper explores the relationship between aspects of indigenous African political culture and the quest for appropriate principles and practices for Africa's political future. Its main thesis is that some political values of traditional Akan soc…

The Social Significance Of Ghana’s 2002 District Level Elections – In The Upper East Region

"This paper attempts to analyse the social structure of the District Assemblies created by the District Assembly Elections of 2002. The Upper East Region of Ghana, which is the poorest region in the country, is the focus of the study. The analysis i…

Beyond The Frontiers Of National Security

"Security is a fundamental pre-requisite for the survival of humankind and should be regarded as the elixir that sustains the stability of society. Without that stabilizing factor, there can be no progress. Any society that cannot develop and progre…

Africa at 50+: Still Searching for the “Political Kingdom”

For the 21st century to become “Africa’s century”, it would require strong political leadership from the top—leadership that is committed and capable of mobilizing the population around a common “national project.” In the coming decades, African lea…

Sustainable Peace Driving the African Peace and Security Architecture through ECOWAS

This paper focuses on the best practices of and lessons learned from ECOWAS in its implementation of the APSA and draws on academic and policy literature, as well as ECOWAS reports and frameworks. The paper focuses particularly on ECOWAS’ attempts t…

Paradigm Shift: Youth Engagement in the Conduct of the 2015 Elections in Nigeria

This paper focuses on the engagement of youth in the conduct of the 2015 general elections in Nigeria, against a backdrop of historical experiences. The article illustrates a paradigm shift in youth engagement with regards to the conduct of election…

Two Decades of Election Observation by the African Union: A Review

This article discusses the various phases the African Union Election Observation Missions (AUEOMs) have passed through since participation by the Organization of African Unity OAU in the UN-led mission to monitor Namibia’s referendum in 1989. The …

Accountability, Contract Officers and the Integrity of the 2012 Election Outcome in Ghana

This paper presents a critical analysis of the 2012 election petition as an expression of dissatisfaction with the EC’s performance. The focus is on the role of temporary electoral officers in eroding public confidence in electoral processes, and …

"Bunker" Democracy and the Challenges of Sustaining Democratic Values in Nigeria - An Appraisal of the 2011 General Elections

This paper has two main focal points. First, it critically reviews Nigeria’s 2011 general elections vis-à-vis manifestations of violence, covering pre-election, election-day and post-election conflicts across all regions of the country. The second t…

A Comparative Case Study of the Voting Behaviour of Poor People in Three Selected South African Communities

This paper shares comparative data from a quantitative study which was undertaken in two selected poor communities during 2013 in Johannesburg (Riverlea and Doornkop) and a rural community in the Limpopo province in 2014. The two key factors that we…

Electoral Predictions in Africa: Predicting Winners in Relatively Stable Two-Party Systems, using Early and Incomplete Results

There is a protracted and tense period between polling and the actual announcement of results in African elections. This intermission is, in the best cases, marked by hopeful candidates urging tense supporters to stay calm. In the worst cases, such…

Journal of African Elections Special Issue South Africa’s 2014 Elections

Susan Booysen looks at the ANC’s impact and the various challenges it confronted and focuses on how the spread of the organisation’s electoral support is changing as a result. Sithembele Mbethe ascribes the ANC’s continued decline against the format…

Is South Africa a Norm Entrepreneur in Africa?

This policy brief aimed to look at South Africa’s commitment to democracy and human rights in Africa, and to consider the drivers behind the often contradictory foreign-policy positions taken by the government. It questions whether South Africa has…

After 50 Years, Freedom of Association is Firmly Established , Though far from Absolute, in Africa

"Fifty years ago today, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly enshrined a freedom that we had probably treasured ever since our evolution into social animals – the right to assemble and associate freely. All African countries except South Sudan a…

Do Africans Still want Democracy?

More than half of all Africans today live in functioning multi-party electoral democracies that are demonstrably freer than the military or one-party regimes that previously dominated the continent. At the same time, the post-1990 gains that African…

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