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Published 16th April 2010

Vol 51 No 8


Sudan

An election victory that widens the North-South gap

Image courtesy of Panos Pictures
Image courtesy of Panos Pictures

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Western governments accept the regime’s rigged victory in exchange for what they hope will be a Southern referendum

Long before voting started on 11 April, it was clear that the ruling National Congress Party (NCP) in Khartoum would maintain its iron grip on power and that interested governments would accept this, despite the widespread evidence of fraud produced by Sudanese and foreign observers alike (AC Vol 51 No 7). The opposition decision to boycott spoiled the plan. For Khartoum, internationally accepted elections would counter the International Criminal Court’s arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omer Hassan Ahmed el Beshir. For Western governments, the elections were an essential building block in an orchestrated peace process which would culminate in next year’s referendum on independence for Southern Sudan.


Election-rigging guide book

Interested governments may turn a deaf ear but the opposition is making sure no one, at home or abroad, can credibly claim the 2010 elections were free and fair. On 12 April, the d...


A moral dilemma

There was no election boycott in Darfur by the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement, Ibrahim Agboola Gambari told Jimmy Carter on 10 April. The United States’ ex-President then told ...



BLUE LINES
THE INSIDE VIEW

The announcement this week by the Maradona of Nigerian politics – General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (aka IBB) – that he will stand as presidential candidate next year for whichever of the 51 political parties that will have him takes us back to the future. It comes just as Acting President Gooduck Jonathan tries to push through critical electoral reforms. While some Nigerians are awed by IBB’s name and reputation for political cunning, others dismiss him as the architect of the anulling of ...
The announcement this week by the Maradona of Nigerian politics – General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida (aka IBB) – that he will stand as presidential candidate next year for whichever of the 51 political parties that will have him takes us back to the future. It comes just as Acting President Gooduck Jonathan tries to push through critical electoral reforms. While some Nigerians are awed by IBB’s name and reputation for political cunning, others dismiss him as the architect of the anulling of the presidential election won by Moshood Abiola in 1993 and the ensuing damage to the political fabric. Such are IBB’s fabled powers that Nigeria’s plentiful conspiracy theorists claim to see his hand in the coming to power of his former rival Gen. Sani Abacha, Abacha’s demise in June 1998 and that of Abiola a week later. To make headway, IBB will have to explain plausibly how and why the 1993 election was annulled and the source of his equally fabled personal wealth. A coalition of activists in Lagos led by veteran lawyer Femi Falana wants to help: they have filed a petition calling on the new Attorney General to prosecute IBB for his failure to account for the presumed US$12.5 billion oil windfall earnings during the Gulf War in 1991. Falana says that a report by the late economist Pius Okigbo showed that the extra-budgetary payments system set up to manage the extra funds was under the direct control of the presidency amid evidence of a huge misappropriation of funds.
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In a league of his own

Claiming that he made Jacob Zuma President, Julius Malema now faces a challenge to his own power base

This week, President Jacob Zuma has hard choices to make about Julius Malema, the vociferous leader of the African National Congress Youth League. Malema has several times publicly...


A government in a hurry

In just twelve months Acting President Jonathan’s team wants to fix the power crisis, reform the NEC and reorganise the state oil company

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Live by the sword

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Contractual confusion

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Le scandale pétrolier

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Looking for a landslide

The ruling party is set to win next month’s elections amid growing criticism at home and abroad

The government is determined to win by a landslide in the 23 May elections, to make up for the question marks over those of 2005 (AC Vol 46 No 11). The signs are that it will succe...



Pointers

ALEKE KADONAPHANI BANDA 1939–2010

The death of Aleke Banda was announced on 9 April 2010. Although he was born in Zambia (then Northern Rhodesia), was educated in Zimbabwe (Southern Rhodesia) and died in South Afri...


German exile

News that Oku Kaunya, a former deputy Commandant in the Administration Police, has gone into exile in Germany will concentrate the minds of the investigators from the International...


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