The 2021 local government elections signals widespread disillusionment with representative democracy that only a sea change in service delivery can fix.
Turnout was low. But not equally so across the board. Patterns show it was not a statement by all voters – it was a message from ANC supporters.
The rise in political parties and the explosion in the number of independents means that it’s no longer simply a race among the three major parties.
President Tshisekedi’s government no longer has the excuse that it’s being hampered by the dead hand of his predecessor Joseph Kabila’s cabal.
The right to free and fair elections may be undermined if political parties cannot campaign due to COVID-19 restrictions by the state.
Zambia’s new president will have to balance austerity and the high expectations of the many unemployed young people and struggling people who voted for him.
It’s not convincing to argue that the political parties would not be able to campaign as they have done in the past.
Frustration is growing among opposition supporters who believe the last election was stolen.
There is more support for democracy among African people than is often recognised. Yet this can be undermined by election rigging and is lower in countries like Lesotho, Mozambique and South Africa.
Angola needs a mixed electoral system. This would promote accountability through the direct election of representatives from constituencies.
Concerns about socioeconomic well-being were the main reason why people voted for a certain political party.
A new government with popular legitimacy will have power to address lingering political, economic and security challenges.
The recent spate of military takeovers, most recently in Chad, highlights a developing trend by armed forces in Africa which overtly subvert constitutional governance.
The international community is opposed to Farmaajo’s term extension because of fears that it’s a power grab consistent with political trends elsewhere in the region.
When he grabbed power in 1990, Déby promised to create a democratic society, but he turned out to be a ruthless authoritarian whose main agenda was to remain in office.
Although polarising, parliament’s move to extend Farmaajo’s term has presented a practical road-map to hold direct elections for the first time since 1969.
He came into office with a reputation for making broken systems work, but as he began his second presidential term John Magufuli became known as a ruthless and ambitious authoritarian.
The legitimacy of SWAPO, the former liberation movement that has governed since 1990, has been eroded amid growing corruption and a deepening economic crisis.
Ethiopia’s party system is extremely volatile due to the prevalence of weakly institutionalised and fragmented political parties.
Although Niger’s quest for entrenching democracy is a good development, poverty and insecurity are obstacles.