Zimbabwe, Mali, Cameroon and the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Presidential elections continue to present important tests of democratic consolidation in Africa, particularly in countries emerging from authoritarian rule or conflict. Despite the controversies and contestations that precede or follow elections, peaceful transitions of power in countries like Sierra Leone, Liberia, The Gambia and Burkina Faso have strengthened confidence in the transformative power of electoral contests and the strength of popular participation. Civil society organisations and social movements are playing increasingly important roles not only in monitoring elections (situation rooms and supporting voter participation) but also in keeping the entire electoral process transparent and in compliance with international standards as well as with the constitutions and electoral codes of the countries concerned.
Recent elections in Zimbabwe and Mali witnessed strong performance of opposition candidates, leading to a historic run-off in Mali and a 50/43 split vote in Zimbabwe between ruling ZANU-PF and opposition MDC. The August 2018 elections in Zimbabwe heralded a new post-Mugabe era, but in many ways reinforced the status quo of ZANU-PF dominance. In Mali, July 2018 elections witnessed an unprecedented run-off between the top two candidates but ultimately resulted in the victory of the incumbent. In both cases, opposition forces represented viable threats but ultimately failed to achieve electoral victory. The Cameroonian elections of October 2018 also witnessed the resurgence of strong opposition candidates, riding the momentum of social malaise surrounding the 2-years of civil unrest in the anglophone regions of the country. The long awaited elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo present an assortment of viable candidates, especially in the absence of incumbent Joseph Kabila. Participation trends vary across these countries and provide helpful indicators for gauging levels of citizen engagement and political consciousness. These recent tests of African democracies will be discussed and analyzed with a view to informing TrustAfrica’s programming in support of civic participation.
Objectives of the discussion:
- Share reflections and insights on the implications of recent and prospective elections
- Identify priority indicators for levels of democratic consolidation, and priority actions for citizens movements and institutions supporting free, transparent, peaceful, and fair electoral processes
- Raise visibility of the threats and opportunities presented by future elections
L’Observatoire Ivoirien des Droits de l’Homme (OIDH) ouvre une causerie-débat sur l’affaire le Procureur c. Laurent Gbagbo et Charles Blé Goudé le 11 octobre 2018 à Abidjan.
Les 1 et 2 octobre ont marqué la reprise du procès le Procureur c. Laurent Gbagbo et Charles Blé Goudé à la Cour Pénale Internationale (CPI). Suspendue à la demande des avocats des accusés, l’audience reprend le 12 novembre2018.
Food systems are a global and immediate priority in the context of climate change, health and resilience. This 3-day conference focuses on the future of food systems in Africa. The conference will explore the complexity, diversity and nutritional value of African food systems and launch an action plan and declaration for change for better food systems geared towards the general public and policymaking bodies including the African Union and the Regional Economic Communities. The first two days will focus on five thematic areas. On the third day, the participants will join with the participants of an organic agriculture conference which follows the food systems event. The combined participants on the third day will number between 400 – 500.
By Amandine Rushenguziminega
The first edition of the Université Populaire de l’Engagement Citoyen (Popular University of Citizens’ Engagement) was launched in Dakar, in July 2018, with the aim of bringing together social movements from the continent to reflect on Africa’s pressing challenges. Discussions turned around the legacy of Pan-Africanism, the political and economic challenges that Africa is currently facing and the need of greater solidarity between citizens. An official continental platform called “Afrikki Platform” has been launched at the end of the one-week event in order to coordinate the different social movements and be the focal point to contact when activists are in danger in order to create chains of solidarity and reactions.
- Bariton Lezabbey, Communications, and Research Intern
- Christiana Banzorwa, Grants, Monitoring and Evaluation Intern
- Chidinma Chinyere Mbaegbu, Executive Director, COLIDEIN
To understand the method used by COLIDEIN on mindset change and attitude reorientation as part of their community engagement strategy when implementing funded projects.
On Wednesday, June 27th, 2018 the Kiisi Trust Fund hosted the first ever Clean Air Summit in Port Harcourt, Rivers State in partnership with Environmental Rights Action, Centre for Human Rights and Development, Suburbia 180 Foundation, and Citizens Information and Development Initiative, with the aim of creating a template for a systematic, coordinated, result oriented and science-based approach to dealing with the black soot air pollution in Rivers state. Since 2016, residents of Port Harcourt, Eleme and other adjoining towns and villages in Rivers State, Nigeria have observed an increase in the daily blanketing of the atmosphere of an oily soot compound, causing serious source of concern to the 5 million people who reside in the state.