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7/1/2008 - Sham elections in Africa

Posted in Politics

[warning: a little political rant]

I have been in Africa for a little over 2 years now and I am amazed at the so called democratic process that is going on here. I know that what we do in Europe is not always pretty, but at least people don't die for voting one way or another.

First there was a sham election in Kenya, where the result was nowhere near free nor fair, but rather than re-doing the election, (and/or sending someone to jail for it), they chose to have a government of 'national unity'. In other word, 'we don't care who you voted for, we will choose your leaders for you'.

Now the elections in Zimbabwe are also a sham, the whole world knows that it is a sham, yet African leaders at the AU summit in Egypt are still patting Robert Mugabe on the back and telling him well done and even applauding him for his abuses.

The South African president Thabo Mbeki would rather be seen dancing, (yes, dancing!), with the Zimbabwean dictator rather than actually doing what 90% of the people that voted him in office are telling him to do.
Because Mugabe was his buddy during the apartheid years he his more than happy to excuse the murder and beating of hundreds of Zimbabweans. He would rather excuse the blatant crimes of his friend rather than saving hundreds of lives and doing what is right, it makes you think, how little does life matter to African governments and African leaders?

Mbeki is happy to close his eyes to the very oppression he claimed he was against. It also makes you think really, what was the ANC really fighting for all this time? To defend the rights of the African people'? because if it is then they are failing the African people miserably over and over again, (how many people must die in Sudan before someone calls Omar Hassan al Bashir and politely asks him to stop doing what he is doing?).

And when the Zimbabwean dictatorship falls, (because all dictatorships eventually collapse), he will probably be welcomed with open arms by many African leaders.

As I said, European governments are not always much better, but at least we can vote them out of office fairly quickly and we have no one to blame than ourselves.

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