Emerging Trends in Africa’s Electoral Processes

Image: Flickr, UN Photo

The quest for competitive elections in Africa, with the modest gains made since the 1990s towards deepening democratisation, continues to underpin the continent’s efforts to create stable and growing democracies.

The quest for competitive elections in Africa, with the modest gains made since the 1990s towards deepening democratisation, continues to underpin the continent’s efforts to create stable and growing democracies. Since the post-Cold War transition from single-party to multiparty systems, most African countries have embraced elections as their preferred option for power transfer. Drawing especially on AU election observation mission reports, this policy briefing examines trends emerging from elections held in 2015 and 2016, and calls for extensive structural, legal and policy reforms. It argues that adherence to and implementation of the AU treaty and non-treaty standards for democratic elections are key to further strengthening electoral processes in Africa.