Thursday, January 5, 2012

2012 African Elections

Here are the key elections I will be following in 2012 in Sub-Saharan Africa:

a.     Senegal- 26 Feb 2012. President Abdoulaye Wade is running for a third term claiming that the constitutional limitation of two terms does not apply to him since his first term was already underway when the restriction went into effect.  The Senegalese opposition has not coalesced behind a single candidate and more significant candidates announce their candidacy each week.  A recent shoot-out at a nightclub resulted in the arrest and incarceration of an opposition leader who claimed he was acting in self-defense when attacked by PDS.  If the opposition can’t solidify behind a single candidate or create a coalition like Wade did when he came to power in 2000, then Wade will win a third term. Many Senegalese have threatened riots if Wade wins.

b.     Angola- Sometime 2012. MPLA has controlled Angola since independence and President dos Santos took power upon the death of the first president Augustino Neto in 1979.  Last elections were held in Sept 2008 and are scheduled again in September 2012.  Voter registration is currently underway and scheduled to conclude 15 April 2012. 

c.     Kenya- 14 Aug 2012. The 2010 constitution abolished the position of prime minister and established a bicameral legislature.  The new constitution also requires a second round of voting if no candidate achieved more than 50% of the vote which may be necessary as current President Mwai Kibaki is ending the second of his two allowed presidential terms.  Kibaki was first elected in 2002 and relected to his second five-year term in 2007.

d.     Mali- 29 Apr 2012. President Amadou Toumani Touré was first elected in 2002 and reelected to his second and constitutionally final five-year term in 2007.  In 2007 Touré won 71.2% of the vote running as an independent, but still widely supported by the Alliance for Democracy in Mali (ADEMA).  Touré was able to run as an independent based on his popularity from his 1991 coup where he led a group that deposed a military government and surrendered power to civilian authorities the following year.  An ADEMA candidate is likely to succeed Touré as they are the most popular party in the country and control 51 seats and the majority of parliament.

e.     Ghana- 7 Dec 2012.  President John Evans Atta Mills narrowly defeated Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in a runoff election in Jan 2009 and will run for a second and final term in Dec 2012.  Popular candidates include the daughter of Nkrumah, Samia Nkrumah and former first lady Nana Konadu Agymang Rawlings.  Elections in Ghana have been generally free and fair and hopefully will be in 2012 as well.

f.      Sierra Leone- August 2012.  President Ernest Bai Koroma (APC) was elected to his first five-year term in September 2007 and will run for his second and final term in 2012.  Julius Maada Bio is the candidate for the largest opposition party (SLPP). The 2007 elections were generally considered free and fair although there were some irregularities. 

g.     Zimbabwe- 2012? President Robert Mugabe isn’t happy with his powersharing agreement with Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai in place since the 2008 presidential elections.  Tsvangirai won the majority in the first round of elections but withdrew before the runoff vote due to violence against his supporters.  The next round of elections should be held in 2013 but Mugabe has been trying to move up elections to end the tense powersharing relationship.

No comments:

Post a Comment