Managing Electoral and Political Competition in Africa: Lessons from Ghana’s 2016 General Elections

Chika Charles Aniekwe
IOB Working Paper 2017.11

African elections are usually highly contested and competitive because of the winner takes all making of most of the political systems on the continent. Since the third wave of democracy (Huntington, 1991), due to the competitive nature of these elections, attention is usually focused on making these elections peaceful and often relatively credible. Little attention has been paid to documenting good practices across these retinue of elections with the bid to providing election practitioners opportunity to learn from good practices that could be applied in similar context and circumstances.  This paper is an attempt at that. It chronicles some of the important measures deployed by different stakeholders towards successful 2016 General Elections in Ghana. It recommends that managing electoral competition in African election requires commitment of political stakeholders, development of mechanisms and measures for both political and judicial redress and commitment to rule of law through independence of the judiciary.      

Keywords: Elections, Democracy, Political Parties, Ghana and Electoral Commission

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