n Conflict Trends - The politicisation of the Mirigu-Kandiga conflict in Ghana's 2008 elections: questioning the electoral peace paradigm

Volume 2009, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1561-9818


Ghana is touted as a model of electoral peace, having held five presidential and parliamentary elections since its "founding elections" in 1992. Two of these elections - the 2000 and the most recent 2008 presidential elections - have led to a turnover of power from the incumbent party to the opposition party: from the National Democratic Congress Party (NDC) to the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in 2000, and vice versa in 2008. While the state is applauded for managing its conflicts well - making Ghana a so-called haven of peace - various individual communities are engaged in violent communal conflicts, some of which have been escalated by electoral politics. This article examines the politicisation or the recharging of latent and relatively unknown conflicts during Ghana's 2008 elections, to challenge the electoral peace theory in general, and the Ghana case in particular. The conflict between two villages, Mirigu and Kandiga, in the Upper East Region of Ghana, is examined.

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