n Journal of African Elections - West Africa in context : elections and the challenges of democratic governance : editorial




Somewhat paradoxically elections are fast becoming the new civil wars in Africa today. Almost two decades ago, when the so-called 'wave of democratisation' swept across the continent signaling an end to authoritarian rule and ushering in a new era of multiparty politics, there was a high degree of optimism that Africa was indeed now on track towards developing a democratic culture based on representative and participatory politics. This optimism was further reinforced by the transformation of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) into the African Union (AU) and the AU's adoption in 2000 of a Constitutive Act which provided the normative direction to guide the continent on its democratic journey.


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