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Urban Café with Miriam Angila

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Elections Without Normalcy Is a Recipe for Disaster

By Gwada Ogot on Thu, 12/10/2017 - 23:46

It is my hope that proponents of 26th October 2017 as the date for a fresh election correctly assessed the prevailing political realities both locally and internationally. Events unfolding in Uganda, Congo, Burkina Faso, Togo and South Sudan as well as around the world indicate that these are evidently troubled times for thrones.

Each case uniquely reflects why we shouldn’t conduct a repeat election through fiat. In a severely fractured nation such as ours, rashness could result in overthrow, civil war or secession. Singularly, normalcy must exist for elections to be effective mechanisms for resolving political contests.

Instructively, elections are designed for citizen to express choices rather than for showcasing government force. AK-47s foul electoral atmospheres. Worse still, holding an election at a time when government is increasingly relying on police brutality and legislative guile to prop itself poses a real danger to citizens’ lives.

In terms of performance, the over 300 petitions filed against a voter total of only 15 million are by numbers and ratio the highest ever in the world. Besides confirming IEBC inefficiency, they also discredit the process and result but alternately legitimise Supreme Court nullification of the presidential poll. In effect, if barely 30% are successful, a situation tantamount to another general election will surely arise. 

The only way to return to normalcy therefore is to plan a new and credible general election devoid of guns and theft for April 2018. If the bungled election took over three years to organise, how long should it logically take to organise a fresh election following a bitter and bloody dispute? As a caution, rushing will certainly result in another national crush.

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