Unconstitutional Changes of Government: The Democrat’s Dilemma in Africa

"While the AU’s response to each case is meant to be automatic and uncompromising, decisions whether and how to respond take place in the context of many factors beyond matters of principle. Cases that the AU has not taken up are as significant as those that have elicited a response. For example, why does Laurent Gbagbo face stronger sanction from the AU than Robert Mugabe, when both leaders refuse to admit to clear electoral defeat? Does ECOWAS prompt the AU to act more readily than the Southern African Development Community or the Intergovernmental Authority on Development, or are the regional hegemons like Nigeria and South Africa driving the PSC decisions? These questions need to be addressed as the organisation develops its jurisprudence in defence of democracy."