Tag Archives: elections

Niger elections protests

The Republic of the Niger national electoral commission on Tuesday, February 23, declared ruling party candidate Mohamed Bazoum the winner of the February 21 runoff election with 55.75% of the vote, but his rival, Mahamane Ousmane, a former president, has alleged fraud and claimed he won with 50.3%. The incumbent President Mahamadou Issoufou is stepping down after two five-year terms.

The supporters of the losing candidate refused to accept the failure, and turned to violence, setting several buildings ablaze, burning tyres and threw rocks at the police on , as the authorities announced that two people had been killed in post-election protests this week.

Since then, two people have been killed and 468 detained during protests by Ousmane’s supporters in the capital Niamey, Interior Minister Alkache Alhada said.

“They want to wreak havoc,” Alhada said at a news conference, blaming opposition leader Hama Amadou for the violence.

There was no immediate response from Amadou, who finished runner-up in the 2016 election. He was barred from running this time because of a criminal conviction and threw his support behind Ousmane.

The election is meant to lead to the first transition from one democratically elected leader to another following four coups since independence from France in 1960.

On Thursday, February 25, small groups of Ousmane supporters took to the streets again to lob rocks at police and national guard troops, who responded by firing tear gas. Internet access has also been severely limited since Wednesday, February 24.

UGANDA: freedom of expression abuse

Brussels 21.01.2021 The European Union is calling for Ugandan officials to lift bans on social media networks imposed in the context of the highly disputed elections. Previously the EU condemned the action by the government to shut down internet which had violated the Ugandan citizens and observers right to expression and information.
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni announced that the government had shut down social media. On January 9, Facebook deleted dozens of pro-Ugandan government accounts, saying they were “fake.” Museveni characterized Facebook’s action as arrogant. (Image: spokesperson of the European Commission).

Uganda: Declaration by the High Representative Josep Borrell on behalf of the European Union on the elections
The European Union (EU) takes note of the results of the presidential elections declared by the Electoral Commission in Uganda:

“The EU welcomes that no major violent incidents were reported on election day but regrets that the disproportionate role given to security forces during the elections brought forth violence in the pre-electoral period, harassment of opposition leaders, suppression of civil society actors and media, and the raiding of a domestic observers office. Access to social media was disturbed, and a full internet blackout disrupted freedom of expression, freedom of information, and regular economic and social activities. In particular, this severely hampered the work of journalists, observers, party agents and others expected to report on the polling results and scrutinise them.

The EU calls on the Government of Uganda to respect the freedom of expression and the right to peaceful and safe assembly, including the free movement of all political actors and their supporters. The EU is gravely concerned by the continued harassment of political actors and parts of civil society. In line with its laws, international commitments and obligations, the Government must ensure that security services act with restraint, that any violations or abuses are duly and impartially investigated, and that those responsible are held to account.

Pending the final results of the electoral process including the parliamentary and local elections, the EU calls on all parties to refrain from any form of violence as well as from statements and actions that may incite violence, and for election challenges and complaints to be addressed in an independent and transparent manner through the available constitutional and legal remedies”.

Borrell: CAR consolidation for peace

Brussels 27.12.2020 The Central African Republic elections are a crucial step for the “consolidation of democracy and peace”, the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell wrote in his Twitter micro blog. He called for the “mobilization of voters and the responsibility of all actors for credible, transparent, inclusive and peaceful elections”, especially mentioning the European Union – African Union ties in support of the democratic transition.

Meanwhile the former Central African Republic president Francois Bozize (pictured) backs the rebels, and urges people against voting in presidential and legislative elections today, AFP Africa reports.

Francois Bozize, president of the Central African Republic from 2003 to 2013 and a participant in two previous attempted coups d’etat, returned from exile in 2019 to run for his old job. In December, just three weeks ahead of the election, Bozize was barred by the Constitutional Court from running again. The court ruled that he had failed to meet the “good morality” requirement for candidates because of an international warrant for his arrest and UN sanctions on charges of assassination and torture. He has since been accused of plotting a new coup.

Despite a series of attacks in the run-up to the Central African Republic’s presidential and legislative elections — the first since a fragile peace deal was reached between the government and rebels in February 2019 — as well as threats against the centers where voter cards are distributed, the possibility of assaults on polling places and the killings of three UN peacekeepers on Saturday, the national elections authority, ANE, has reported that the vote will go on.

Despite threats against voting offices and polling places, the Central African Republic’s election authority has said Sunday’s, December 27, vote will go ahead. According to press reports Mankeur Ndiaye, the UN’s special envoy for CAR said the situation was under the control of the UN Blue Helmets, together with the Central African armed forces and the Central African domestic security forces, such as gendarmes and police. They were on the scene to react to any attacks or strategies of harassment by certain armed groups in alliance with Francois Bozize, the goal of which was to obstruct the election process by preventing Central African citizens from receiving their voting cards and going to polling places on December 27.

“We face attacks every day, but our response has been overwhelming” Mankeur Ndiaye concluded.

Ugandan opposition candidate arrested

Ugandan presidential candidate and pop star, Bobi Wine, who is seeking to replace long-ruling President Yoweri Museveni, was arrested on Wednesday while campaigning in the east of the country, he said on Twitter.

In two tweets, Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, said police had violently broken into his vehicle and taken him into custody. Police did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
“The price of freedom is high but we shall certainly overcome,” Wine, 38, said in one of the tweets.

A local independent newspaper, Daily Monitor, reported demonstrators had erected barricades and lit fires on some roads in the capital Kampala and at least one other town to protest against Wine’s arrest.
Since expressing his intention to run against Museveni, Wine has won a large following, especially among young people in the east African country.

The young generation supporters explain they are drawn to him by his criticism of Museveni’s government mingled in his lyrics. Others say that as a young leader he is better positioned to tackle the challenges they face.

Ouattara III term confirmed by Judges

Brussels 09.11.2020 A week after the announcement of the victory of Alassane Ouattara, the Constitutional Council confirms the results published by the Electoral Commission, which gave 94.27% of the vote to the outgoing President.

https://twitter.com/jeune_afrique/status/1325803663496007680?s=20

The Ivorian Constitutional Council declared the ballot “regular” and validated, this Monday, November 9, the final results of the Ivorian presidential election of October 31, confirming those proclaimed a week earlier by the Independent Electoral Commission (CEI).

Alassane Ouattara, 78, was officially elected for a third term with 94.27% of the votes cast, following a campaign marked by an “active boycott” of the opposition. The participation rate is 53.90%.

Côte d’Ivoire: EU notes disparities

“The European Union (EU) takes note of the announcement of the provisional results announced by the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC). The lack of consensus on the electoral framework has fractured the country. Many Ivorians went to the polls, but many others did not, either by choice or by impediment due to violence and blockades” the head of the European Union diplomacy wrote on his Twitter micro blog.

“The EU notes the very wide disparities in the participation rate in the different regions of the country, as highlighted by several election observation missions present there.
“The EU expresses its deep concern at the tensions, provocations and incitement to hatred that prevailed and continue to persist in the country around this election. The violence which has caused the death of several people and injured many must be independently investigated so that justice can be served as soon as possible.

“The EU expects all stakeholders to take the initiative in favour of calming the climate and resuming dialogue, involving new generations and promoting reconciliation through very concrete measures that will turn the page on violence and division. It will support any effort deployed in this direction by national and international actors”.

Tanzania: Magufuli celebrates victory

Tanzania’s President John Magufuli was re-elected for a second, five-year term, securing a landslide victory in a contest that has been dismissed by the opposition as a “travesty” due to widespread irregularities.

Magufuli got 12.5 million votes in Wednesday’s vote on October 28, or 84%, according to the calculations mentioned in press outlets, more than 10 million more votes than his main challenger, Tundu Lissu of the Chadema party, who got 1.9 million votes, the National Electoral Commission said.

In his bid for a second term, Magufuli has promised voters that he will pay a special attention to the economy by completing ambitious infrastructure projects he started in his first term, such as a new hydropower dam, a rail-line and planes for the national carrier.

Lissu has previously said that he will not accept the eventual election results.

The U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Tibor Nagy, said on Friday, “we remain deeply concerned about reports of systematic interference in the democratic process.”

Côte d’Ivoire: EU concerned with violence

“On the eve of the presidential election in Côte d’Ivoire, the European Union associates itself with the statement by the Secretary General of the United Nations” reads the statement of the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell, addressing the upcoming presidential election in Côte d’Ivoire.

“It expresses its greatest concern following the violent incidents and hate speech observed in recent weeks. “She urges all political actors to show responsibility, restraint and reject any violence.
It calls on the institutions in charge of the electoral process to ensure a transparent, credible and peaceful ballot”.

Ivorian voters have planned vote this Saturday, October 31, to designate their President. The campaign for this ballot has already resulted in around thirty deaths – mainly due to hate crimes between the north and south – and there are fears of new violence on the election day and during the announcement of the results.

The opposition parties have insisted that the incumbent President Ouattara has served the maximum two terms allowed by the Constitution. Mr Ouattara’s supporters insist that the two-term limit was reset when a new constitution was adopted in 2016.

Henri Konan Bédié, 86, from Democratic Party of Ivory Coast (PCDI). Served as president between 1993 and 1999, deposed in coup, and Pascal Affi N’Guessan, 67, from Ivorian Popular Front (FPI) faction, who served as prime minister between 2000 and 2003 under then-President Laurent Gbagbo are the major competitors of the incumbent President Ouattara.

EU deplores Cote d’Ivoire violence

“As part of the current electoral process, the European Union (EU) reiterates its attachment to the principles of inclusiveness, freedom of expression, transparency, respect for the rule of law and any independent observation mechanisms. , necessary to ensure a ballot with credible results accepted by all”  reads statement by the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell on behalf of the European Union on the presidential election in Cote d’Ivoire on October 31, 2020.

“The EU deplores the violence and clashes in recent weeks, which have claimed the lives of several people, and calls on the authorities to investigate them in order to prosecute the perpetrators. It also calls for respect for public freedoms, including the right for every citizen to demonstrate peacefully, within the framework provided by law, without being worried, and to express political opinions without being arrested or imprisoned.

“The EU takes note of the decision of the Constitutional Council on September 14 on the candidates selected for the presidential election. While it is not for it to pronounce on this matter, the EU recalls that it is the primary responsibility of the competent Ivorian authorities and institutions to guarantee an impartial, transparent, inclusive and fair electoral process, winning the support of the citizens. It notes the various procedures opened before the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) relating to the electoral process and recalls its attachment to respect for international justice.

“The EU calls on the entire political class and civil society, as well as the administrations concerned, to dialogue and engage in a responsible, constructive and peaceful manner and to ensure that this electoral process can sustainably consolidate reconciliation between all Ivorians. It also encourages the authorities to take the initiative to help calm the political climate.

“As a long-standing partner of the Ivory Coast, the EU will continue to accompany and support the country in this process, with all the actors concerned”.

Tigray region counts ballots

Tigray region held regional elections on September 9, in spite of protests of the federal government and increasing political tensions in Ethiopia.

While Prime Minister Abiy has ruled out military intervention, there are fears that any punitive measures by the federal government could further escalate tensions.

The Tigray defiance of the federal government is the latest challenge to the administration of Nobel Peace Price winner Abiy, who is struggling to hold together a federation that assembles Ethiopia’s more than 80 ethnic groups.

The regional officials, holding polls for the 190-seat Tigray parliament, warned that any intervention by the federal government would amount to a “declaration of war”.

They objected to the postponement of the national and regional elections, originally scheduled for August, explained by the coronavirus pandemic and the extension of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s time in office.

The local sources said results will be announced by September 13.

On, Ethiopia’s upper house of parliament, which mediates constitutional disputes, ruled that the polls for regional parliaments and other positions were unconstitutional, announcing the assessment on September 5, which did not stop Tigray region to continue with election timetable.

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