Elections, Electoral Reforms and Post-Election Violence: Problems and Way Forward

In: Social Issues

Submitted By p24real2000
Words 5044
Pages 21


In the contemporary world of today, elections have become the most accepted means of changing the government. Although history has shown that it is usually difficult to hold elections that are free and fair. But the importance of a good electoral act cannot be underestimated especially in a developing country like Nigeria where elections were reported to be marred by irregularities by foreign and local observers. It is on this basis that this paper critically observed, even with the electoral reforms carried out, the reasons why there were violence after the 2011 general election and recommended that adopting the basic part of the reforms, devolvement of power at the centre are other plausible way forward to true and sustainable democratic system in Nigeria.

The electoral system of any given country plays a fundamental role in sustaining and moulding the political behaviour of its citizens (Okolo,2000). The way and manner election is conducted in a country goes a long way to determine the level of poltical culture, political participation and good governance in the country. These ascertion give a clue to the importance a of good and healthy electoral system in a country.
Since democracy means rule by the people, people are supposedly able to choose politicians they want to represent their interest in the government through election. Although history has it that it is usually difficult to hold elections that are completely free and fair. In 2004, the…...

Similar Documents

Assess the Arguments for Retaining the First Past the Post System for General Elections

...The first past the post electoral system is the procedure in which electorates in their individual constituency vote for a party, the winners are generally the party that receives the most votes as well as reaches a fifty per cent majority of the votes; the remainder of the votes are discarded. The first past the post system (FPTP) is used in various countries; prime examples are the general elections in the UK and the presidential elections in USA. Although the first past the post system has received general acceptance, there has been many debates to how democratic the process is and if it should be replaced with a more “fairer” and “democratic” electoral system… Firstly, the main issue within the first past the post system is the democratic persona it creates; due to the fact that only the votes of the successful party are counted and the remaining votes (no matter how close) are discounted therefore making it based on a “winner takes all” system and in effect, undermining the remaining candidates as well as electorates whose votes are discounted. This can be seen evidently in the 2010 general elections as although labour had won 258 seats, conservatives had won 307 seats therefore stating conservatives had received more votes than all other parties and so their votes are the only one that count whilst all other votes are redundant. Systems involving proportional representation, such as the Additional Member System (AMS) are more democratic as electorates receive two votes...

Words: 934 - Pages: 4

1912 Election

...The election of 1912 was a four-way race with a voting outcome the US has not seen since. The race began when William Howard Taft received the Republican nomination for re-election over Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt had previously been President from 1901-1909; his first term inherited due to the in-office death of William McKinley. Upon election into his second term (first full term), Roosevelt vowed to not run for office again. Fast forward to 1912, the end of the first term of Roosevelt’s hand picked successor William Howard taft, and Teddy was back in the race. After losing the Rebuplican nomination to Taft, who received more support from the conservative side of the party, Roosevelt had a convention of his own and started the Progressive Party. Naturally, Roosevelt got the nomination. With Woodrow Wilson receiving the Democrat’s nomination for election, and Eugene V. Debs running under the increasingly loud Socialist umbrella, the stage was set for the 1912 Presidential Election. “The four way contest between Taft, Roosevelt, Democrat Woodrow Wilson, and Socialist Eugene V. Debs became a national debate on the relationship between political and economic freedom in the age of big business. On one end of the political spectrum stood Taft, who stressed that economic individualism could remian the foundation of the solial order so long as government and private entreprenuers cooperated in addressing social ills. At the other end was Debs. Relatively few Americans......

Words: 1692 - Pages: 7

Presidential Election

...popular vote it is the electoral vote. Figure1 Figure1 The candidate who wins the 270 electoral votes is the one who will be elected President; There are 538 votes up for offer. When looking at figure 1, it shows where each candidate has States strongly for them or leaning towards them. Currently Romney has 206 electoral votes either strongly for or leaning towards him. The President has 237 electoral votes. The key to winning the election is the 8 swing states that hold 95 votes, as shown in yellow these are where the candidates will pick up the votes to win. The swing States are shown in the table. In 2008 Obama took all the toss-up states but that’s unlikely to happen this year due to states like Nevada having the highest unemployment in the country at 11.9%. Also Virginia (expect 2008) hadn’t voted for the Democrats since 1964 so they could go back to their Republican ways. In 2010 New Hampshire voted for the Republican Senator and the Republicans did well in the mid-terms in Florida, making Romney seem as though he could have a very good chance of winning. Obama has more paths to the 270 votes than Romney has, for instance if the President loses the three key states of Florida, Ohio and Virginia but wins all other states he will win with 272 and Romney would have 266 votes, if the States voted the way they did in 2004 election Romney would win all but 2 swing states (Wisconsin and new Hampshire) and New Mexico he would win with 292 electoral votes. Another path to...

Words: 2431 - Pages: 10

Alexander Hamilton’s Electoral College and the Modern Election

...Alexander Hamilton’s Electoral College and the Modern Election Colin Campbell Prof. R Hurl TA: Matthew Lesch Tutorial: Thursday, 4:00 PM, UC 67) U. S. Government and Politics (POL 208 Y1Y) 1 November 2012 Alexander Hamilton’s Electoral College and the Modern Election When American's leaders assembled in Philadelphia in 1787, they originally had the goal of solving issues that had arisen from the Articles of Confederation, which had governed the young nation since separating from Britain. Instead, they drafted a completely new document that established a more permanent and effective central government. With it, they established the office of President of the United States. Rather than being directly elected by the people or selected by the legislature – as described by Alexander Hamilton in the Federalist Papers – the head of state was to be elected by an independent institution that existed solely for the purpose of finding a man who was up to the job: a group that would become known as the Electoral College. However, as the political nature of the country evolved in an unanticipated and partisan way, the independence of this body became increasingly irrelevant, resulting in a system which fails to meet the standards of a true modern democracy. Although the Electoral College system has never substantially been reformed, it is now a mere formality which leads to the types of campaigns which it was designed to prevent. In The Federalist, Number 68, Hamilton argues...

Words: 1842 - Pages: 8


...The current electoral system has been constantly assessed and targeted by civilians who believe that First Past The Post is no longer effective and should be gotten rid of. Even though it lost in the 2011 referendum, People still believe the electoral system should be changed, especially the liberal democrats who are in favour of this change because they would benefit. FPTP is a simple plurality system the candidate with the most votes in one constituency becomes a MP and then the party with the most MPs becomes the government. The first reason i think the electoral system should be reformed is that the system is very unrepresentative as large mainstream parties with their supporters concentrated in certain constituencies do well and win. For example the constituency of Buckingham is highly populated with conservative supporters meaning that any other people living in that area who want to vote for labour or any other parties will continuously lose, so their votes are wasted and even more votes are wasted if losing parties' supporters are spread out rather than concentrated making it unfair especially to fringe parties. However, even though it can be seen as unrepresentative, it is quote an efficient method as it usually guarantees that one party will win the majority and become the government making it easier to pass laws in parliament unless there is a coalition which would lead to clashes in ideas. Another argument for reform is that minority governments are......

Words: 705 - Pages: 3


...One month, until the election booth opens. “Yippee” my friend Cass says. I don’t know why she’s thrilled, it’s only the election. Just like voting for a class captain except now we are 18, not in school and we have to vote for a captain of our country. The mention of the word country, just adds a bit more importance to everything, doesn’t it? Ten minutes of my life is going to be gone just to go and vote. A whole months worth of ads used up for elections, when they can be accounted for six episodes of Gossip Girl. Gone. My life right now is sky rocketing. In two more weeks there will be no more campaigns. Cass can’t get a hold of herself; I think she is going to explode. I think I am going to explode. Mum is starting to take interest and is asking me for election advice. Seriously mum, what am I suppose to know? “You should be interested in the elections, first time you get to vote. Aren’t you excited? It’s your future here we are all voting for, use your power, use your rights, make it count! Don’t you know how significant voting is; it’s so special that it doesn’t come every single year.” Blah blah blah, mum is going through her whole sixties, feminist, power phase, saying “voting is great and democracy is awesome.” Democracy is only majority rules, and voting is just another word to accompany it. Rights and power, if we all had rights and power why didn’t the blacks utilise their power to get their land back they had the rights and numbers to do so. However it doesn’t......

Words: 807 - Pages: 4


...An election is a formal decision-making process by which a population chooses an individual to hold public office.[1] Elections have been the usual mechanism by which modern representative democracy has operated since the 17th century.[1] Elections may fill offices in the legislature, sometimes in the executive and judiciary, and for regional and local government. This process is also used in many other private and business organizations, from clubs to voluntary associations and corporations....Election is the real participation of people in democracy, where the people participate in direct way to form in government. Election is not only a process where people go on cast his vote, though it is a festival of democracy system. Democracy depend on people, people depend on election there they elected his representative to parliament or government. Government needs to go with election for taking fresh memorandum through people of his country. Election shows the country is rule by the people of that country. Whenever government need for a fresh new term of his government they will go for election. Election is a power of government also a power of people. The dominance of the Indian National Congress was broken for the first time in 1977, with the defeat of the party led by Indira Gandhi, by an unlikely coalition of all the major other parties, which protested against the imposition of a controversial Emergency from 1975–1977. A similar coalition, led by VP Singh was swept to power...

Words: 2094 - Pages: 9

Electoral Reforms

...ELECTORAL REFORMS IN INDIA: ISSUES AND CHALLENGES BEFORE THE ELECTION COMMISSION SYNOPSIS 1) Introduction 2) Electoral Reforms in India 3) Elections in India 4) Free and fair elections 5) Criminalization in Electoral System: 6) Issues and challenges before the Election Commission 7) Current Situation ABSTRACT In this essay, we have a given a brief view about elections and politics inheriting criminalization. The failure of the Legislature to deliberately think over key issues, particularly criminalization in politics forms the fragment of introduction. A concise panorama about the misuse of authority, money power and muscle power escort the introducing lines. Besides, the essay entails the electoral reforms in India. The transformations in the same has been discussed such as the introduction of Electronic Voting Machine, lowering of voting age, deputation of Election Commission is included. The power of Election Commission accompanies the above lines in the essay. Further, the method of free and fair elections forms a part of it. The elections held at regular intervals, that is, after every five years forms a part of our democratic structure. Auxiliary, the next part deals with criminalization in politics leading to an unfair election. Few instances aiding such criminalization in politics add to it. Use of money power to win elections has also been discussed in this essay. The subsequent part enumerates the issues and challenges before the......

Words: 3206 - Pages: 13


...Jeff Chandler Political Science 1 Mon/Wed 12:40-2:00 Assignment #3: Elections & Campaign Funding The articles I chose focus on congressional elections and campaign funding. The Supreme Court recently lifted the cap on amount donors can contribute in a congressional election. The courts decision threw out the $74,600 limit for donations to political parties and the $48,600 limit for House or Senate candidates in a two-year campaign season. However donors still cannot contribute more than $5,200 to a single candidate per election, but without the overall caps, those who can afford it can have an enormous influence by donating to many candidates. Donors could contribute up to 3.6 million dollars by giving to all 435 House candidates and the 33 candidates for Senate seats up for election, as well as each party’s national committees. Under current election laws the parties could redistribute the money, possibly even using the entire amount to benefit one candidate. Critic believe this could lead to a consolidation of political power to a wealthy few, as well as the party’s leaders, resulting in improper influence on Capitol Hill (L.A. Times). We already know that party officials and candidates will solicit these large contributions from wealthy donors because such contributions will help increase the party’s power, as well as candidates standing among his colleagues. Fund raising to meet the high costs of campaigning is the most important hurdle for any candidate for...

Words: 744 - Pages: 3

The Election of President Obama and Post Racialism

...regardless of their ethnic background or race every expected the election of an African American as President of the United States to occur in their lifetime. Nevertheless, it became a reality and in great part the following events, conditions and situations that took place between 1900 and the year of 2000 created a social political and economic environment that allowed this historical event to take place. First of all, the American people shared the same value system regardless of their race. After the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s, the attitudes of the people evolved from privilege being reserved for whites only to a quest for the survival of humankind. There was a marked growth in the black middle class with the inception of the Harlem Renaissance which brought about the perception that African Americans had value in that they could entertain and were skilled at it. Another factor that was conducive to the outcome was the fact that racism began to decline and younger generations were much less racist than their parents and grandparents were. This evolution of attitudes towards African Americans brought about an awareness and testament to the world to what African Americans had to offer largely in part to the post civil war era whereby African Americans were progressive and they were interested in educating themselves after the end of slavery. Another event that moved us closer to the election of an African American President was the initiatives of......

Words: 846 - Pages: 4


...1 Violence Free Elections: Perspectives on the Peace Initiatives on the 2015 General Elections in Nigeria Warisu O. Alli Institute of Peace and Conflict Resolution Plot 496 Abogo Largema Street, CBD, Abuja Email: alliwo@yahoo.co.uk; Mobile: 08035991377 ABSTRACT Elections are essential in a democracy and are fundamental features of representative democracy.. When free, fair and transparent, they confer credibility and legitimacy on the outcome. However, Nigeria's electoral history has always been marred by various levels of violence with grave implications for the polity. Since return of democratic rule in 1999, Nigeria, has conducted elections in 2003, 2007, 2011 but with an ever increasing rise in electoral violence. The April 2011 elections, which benefitted from the electoral reform efforts of President Yar ‗Adua, and was considered the most credible since the return to democracy also turned out to be the most violent as the country witnessed an orgy of bloodshed after the elections. The 2015 elections were to be held against the background of a prediction about the disintegration of Nigeria against the background of several socio-economic, political and security challenges, including insurgency in the nation‘s North East. The emergence of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as a formidable opposition to the ruling People Democratic Party (PDP) fifteen year rule also added more tension to the charged atmosphere of the elections. The Peace Initiatives which started......

Words: 9153 - Pages: 37

The 2015 Presidential Election in Nigeria

... 10 Things to Note About Nigeria’s 2015 Presidential Election Share 0 0 0 0 [pic] Jide Akintunde 1. President Jonathan’s statesmanship and Nigeria’s propensity to surprise the world: It is the nature of politics and governance: one major event often defines the outcome of an election or public perception of a regime. Therefore, the most remarkable outcome of Nigeria’s 2015 presidential election is that President Goodluck Jonathan conceded defeat to General Muhammadu Buhari in a very timely fashion. This good sportsmanship of President Jonathan immediately conferred statesmanship on him. His presidency will be remembered for nothing better or worse because what he delivered is what was mostly important to Nigeria, Nigerians and the world: peaceful outcome of the election. That the one who fostered electoral best practice became its major victim is an irony; but it is not a cruel irony. It is what has earned President Jonathan greatness. If he had been the beneficiary of his efforts which made the elections that held during his presidency far more credible than all the previous elections in the history of independent Nigeria, the positive shift he has now given Nigerian elections would not have been very obvious, significant and pace-setting. Indeed, we could not have missed the sacrifice of President Jonathan in this election. On national television stations, we saw the President wait on his feet for a fruitless over 30 minutes for INEC’s card readers to accredit him, his wife...

Words: 2961 - Pages: 12


...Success Success can come in many various ways. Many men and women generally interpret success as being affluent in life. The meaning of success is clear, but complex because many people define success differently. The poor, the unpopular, and the popular people have their ways of being successful, while the rich have their own ways of being successful as well. People who are successful in life have a strong passion for their work. According to Oxford Dictionary, success is defined as the accomplishment of an aim or purpose. In Tom Perrotta’s novel Election, the two main characters, Tracy Flick and Paul Warren, illustrate their differences in their motivation and work ethic when running for student body president. Tracy’s disadvantage makes it harder for her to run for student body president against Paul, who is privileged, for success. In order to be successful, Tracy has to be self-motivated. Motivation is defined as the act or process of giving someone a reason for doing something. In the beginning of chapter one, Tracy explains her qualifications when running for president. Her qualifications were listed as, “President of the Junior Class, Treasurer of the SGA, Assistant Editor of The Watchdog, statistician for the basketball team, and star of last year’s musical (Oklahoma!, in case you’re wondering) (Perrotta 8-9). Tracy’s achievements made her qualified to run for student body president as well as portrays her as a great academic student represent of her high......

Words: 1264 - Pages: 6

Presidential Election

...2016 Presidential Election I have chosen to write about the candidate Ted Cruz from the 2016 presidential election. I will be discussing Mr. Cruz’ political stance on immigration, gun control, and gay rights. We also discuss how David Easton, Harold Lasswell, and Hans Morganthan apply to our political parties now in days. The first issue we shall deliberate on is immigration because it has been a hot topic during the debates. The Texas Senator has a website discussing his stance on this issue and what he would do to change it like building a wall to prevent illegal immigrants or terrorist from crossing over to American soil. He also wants to triple the border patrol agents to secure the wall. He has also said that he would put an end to President Obama’s amnesty by rescinding all those that he gave out. He has always been trying to strengthen our immigration system. For an instance, when he filed an amendment that would block illegal immigrants that are living in the United States from ever getting their citizenship, strengthen border security, prohibit federal, state, and local benefits from giving assistants to undocumented immigrants. In an article from the U.S. News Cruz stated that: The amendments filed today to strengthen border security and reform our legal immigration system will not only bring meaningful, effective improvements to our immigration system, but also have a chance of becoming law. America is a nation of immigrants, built by immigrants and we......

Words: 1483 - Pages: 6

Nixon Election

...presidential election in November 1968? Richard Nixon’s scant win in the election of 1968 by a mere 500,000 votes marked the end of one of America’s most tumultuous years. The assassinations, revolutions, riots, and the Vietnam War all made 1968 a year to remember in American history and the presidential race was no different. Though Nixon actually received fewer votes than he did in the 1960 election, he was able to take the presidency and begin America’s move towards conservatism. Although Nixon did make some right decisions to win the presidency, the bigger story in this election were the trials and tribulations in the Democratic camp and how they essentially sabotaged themselves. Nixon’s rise to the Republican representative began with Barry Goldwater’s smashing defeat in the 1964 election to the hands of Lyndon Johnson. Goldwater’s extreme antics had put a bad taste in the mouths of many in the GOP and Nixon used this to capture the middle and essentially the Republican nomination. Many people of America became disillusioned with the liberal programs of the Great Society and Nixon vowed to reduce such social programs and to encourage individual initiative and entrepreneurship. In attacking the welfare programs, Nixon established the Republicans as the party of white America, a tactic that helped him woo many Southerners who had become frustrated with the divided Democratic party. Nixon called out to “the forgotten Americans, those who did not indulge in......

Words: 745 - Pages: 3

How It Works - Full Year 2018 Collection | Kommentare (0) | National Geographic: Техасский улов / Big Fish Texas [01-04 из 08] (2016) DVB | P1