n Institute for Security Studies Papers - AIDS and elections in Southern Africa : is the epidemic undermining its democratic remedy?

Volume 2005, Issue 110
  • ISSN : 1026-0404



It is widely argued that democratic governance, and the democratic elections that are a pre-requisite of democracy, may play an important role in generating the political will, legitimacy, and resources to formulate and implement policies for preventing and treating HIV / AIDS. By making HIV / AIDS an election issue and providing voters with an opportunity to either reward or hold the governing party accountable for a failure to respond adequately to the epidemic, elections can help to determine the success or failure of a country's overall political response to the HIV / AIDS epidemic. At the same time, there is evidence to suggest that the very nature and scale of the epidemic is undermining its democratic remedy.

This paper explores the links between HIV / AIDS and electoral processes in Southern Africa and how different institutional arrangements may form part of a strong political response to the problem.

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