Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 4565

Search results for: June 7 general elections

4565 The Use of Facebook as a Social Media by Political Parties in the June 7 Election in Konya

Authors: Yasemin Gülşen Yılmaz, Süleyman Hakan Yılmaz, Muhammet Erbay

Abstract:

Social media is among the most important means of communication. Social media offers individuals and groups with an opportunity for participatory socialization over the internet, which is free of any time and place restrictions. Social media is a kind of interactive communication and bilateral social network. Various communication contents can be shared and put into mass circulation easily and quickly through social media. These sharings are not only limited to individuals but also happen to groups, institutions, and different constitutions. Their contents consist of any type of written message, audio and video files. We are living in the social media era now. It is not surprising that social media which has extensive communication facilities and massive prevalence is used in politics. Therefore, the use of social media (Facebook) by political parties during the Turkish general elections held on June 7, 2015, has been chosen as our research subject. Four parties namely, AKP, CHP, MHP and HDP who have the majority of votes in Turkey and participate in elections in Konya have been selected for our study. Their provincial centers’ and parliamentary candidates` use of social media (Facebook) on the last three days prior to the election have been examined and subjected to a qualitative analysis by means of content analysis.

Keywords: social media, June 7 general elections, politics, Facebook

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4564 Mass Media Representation and the Status of Women in the 2015 General Elections in Nigeria

Authors: Grace Anweh, Patience Achakpa-ikyo

Abstract:

The issue of women unfavourable representation in the mass media is long standing. While it is a worldwide problem, developing countries in Africa especially Nigeria are considered peculiar. This paper, ‘mass media representation and the status of women in the 2015, general elections in Nigeria’ therefore aimed to assess the current trend of role playing in the mass media and how this has affected general status of women in Nigeria politics with particular reference to the 2015 general elections. The study employed a review of secondary literature and data regarding previous performances of Nigeria women in politics from 1999 to 2015 and the picture that has been paid by Nigerian mass media about women. Anchoring the paper on the agenda setting theory of the mass media, the paper analysed secondary literature and discovered that from 1999 to date, women have been participating in politics but rather than improve their status in elective offices, the percentage of women for such offices is rather declining. This trend the paper concluded is attributed to the way and manner women are represented in the mass media - as not good for policy making offices except as kitchen and home managers. The paper therefore recommends that, the country should adopt the quota allocation for all the political parties in order to give women a chance to compete with their male counterparts. While women should strive towards the managerial and ownership of media houses in order to represent the interest of women in politics thus offering the opportunity for the favourable representation of women and role models for those who may want to tour a similar part.

Keywords: mass media, media representation, Nigeria elections, women

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4563 Turbulent Election History: An Appraisal of Triggering Issues in Nigeria

Authors: Olajumoke Tolulope Esan, Odunayo Stephen Faluse

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Nigeria’s electoral politics from independence has been tumultuous. Violence has continued to damage the conduct of almost all general elections in Nigeria, Thereby making free and fair elections an event that seems to be unachievable in the history of the nation’s politics. Apparently, electoral violence has subjected the Nation into stereotyped electoral procedures that are always dictated through powerful political Godfathers. However, the shameful act of riotous and tumultuous election processes has led to a political, national instability festering irregularities that manifest at different stages of the election, thus subjecting almost all elections carried out in Nigeria below the minimum democracy standard. Hence the fact that an average Nigerian is being deprived of his or her individual electoral rights should be enough to attract Global political interventions from the western world as Nigeria is part of the commonwealth countries and every Nigerians have the right to demand for posterity to be ensured by protecting individual rightful votes. Basically for elections to be termed democratic, it must be free and fair. In view of this, A deep understanding of this paper is a reflection on the tides of electoral violence and the alarming precipitating factors that make free and fair election almost unreachable in Nigeria.

Keywords: democracy, election, electoral violence, political violence

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4562 Impact of Newspaper Coverage of 2015 General Elections in Nigeria

Authors: Shola H. Adeosun, Lekan M. Togunwa, Kolawole Z. Amos

Abstract:

This paper appraises ‘Newspaper Coverage of 2015 General Election: A study of The Punch and Guardian Newspapers’. The objectives of the study were to examine how credible newspaper reports of 2015 election were and to examine the significant role Nigeria Newspapers played in the 2015 general elections. Also this study examined the extent at which the print media contributed to the success of 2015 general election and to ascertain the extent at which print media reports serve as a tool for sensitizing the masses. The research questions that guided this research include: How credible was newspaper report of 2015 general election? To what extent did the print media contributed to the success of 2015 general elections? To what extent did the print media reports serve as a tool for sensitizing the masses? The research work was given solid theoretical foundation with the review of Agenda-setting theory, Media System Dependency Theory and Normative theories. This study was given solid theoretical foundation with the review of Agenda-setting theory, Media Dependency Theory and Normative theories. The theory was conducted using content analysis method of research and 30 publications of both The Guardian and Punch Newspaper between January 1st and March 30, 2015 forms the population for this research work. Selection of the dates and editions of Newspaper under study were done using the composite week sampling technique. All the days of the week were used for the newspapers because they (The Punch and The Guardian) are published all the days of the week. Coding sheet was the tool of data collection for the content analysis of this study. Findings of the study revealed that by the Punch newspaper and Guardian has played a significant role in eradicating election malpractices in Nigeria. It therefore concludes that media is metaphoric when we termed it to be a watchdog of the nation as well the mirror through which the nation see and recognize itself. The study also recommends that Nigerian media should strike balance between entertainment stories, crisis stories, economic stories, law story, education stories, terrorism stories, health stories, sport stories, metropolitan stories instead of portraying the country as being crime oriented.

Keywords: newspaper, coverage, general elections, impact

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4561 Reclaiming the House with Use of Web 2.0 Tools: Democratic Candidates and Social Media during Midterm Elections in 2018

Authors: Norbert Tomaszewski

Abstract:

Modern politicians tend to resign from the traditional media as Web 2.0 tools allow them to interact with a much bigger audience while spending less money on their campaign. Current studies on this subject prove that in order to win the elections, the candidate needs to show his personal side during the campaign to appeal to the voter as an average citizen. Because of that, the internet user may engage in the politician's campaign by spreading his message along with his followers. The aim of the study is to determine how did the Democratic candidates use the Web 2.0 tools during the 2018 midterm elections campaign and whether they managed to succeed. Taking into consideration the fact that the United States as a country, has always set important milestones for the political marketing as a field of science, the result of the research can set some examples on how to manage the modern internet campaign in less developed countries.

Keywords: political campaign, midterm elections, social media, Web 2.0

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4560 Citizens’ Readiness to Adopt and Use Electronic Voting System in Ghana

Authors: Isaac Kofi Mensah

Abstract:

The adoption and application of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in government administration through e-government is expected to permeate all sectors of state/ public institutions as well as democratic institutions. One of such public institutions is the Electoral Commission of Ghana mandated by the 1992 Constitution to hold all public elections including presidential and parliamentary elections. As Ghana holds its 7th General Elections since 1992, on 7th November 2016, there are demands from key stakeholders for the Election Management Body, which is the Electoral Commission (EC) of Ghana to adopt and implement an electronic voting system. This case study, therefore, attempts to contribute significantly to the debate by examining influencing factors that would impact on citizen’s readiness to adopt and use an electronic voting system in Ghana. The Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) was used as a theoretical framework for this study, out of which a research model and hypotheses were developed. Importantly, the outcome of this research finding would form a basis for appropriate policy recommendation for consideration of Government and EC of Ghana.

Keywords: citizens readiness, e-government, electronic voting, technology acceptance model (TAM)

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4559 Free, Fair, and Credible Election and Democratic Governance in Bangladesh

Authors: Md. Awal Hossain Mollah

Abstract:

The aim of this study was to evaluate the relation between the free, fair and credible election in ensuring democratic governance in Bangladesh. The paper is a case (Bangladesh) study and qualitative in nature and based on secondary sources of materials. For doing this study, conceptual clarification has been done first and identified few elements of free, fair and credible elections. Then, how far these elements have been ensured in Bangladeshi elections has been evaluated by analyzing all the national elections held since independence. Apart from these, major factors and challenges of holding a free, fair and credible election in Bangladesh have been examined through using the following research questions: 1. Does role of election commission matter for free, fair and credible elections to form a democratic government? 2. Does role of political parties matter for democratic governance? 3. Do role of government matter for conducting the free, fair and credible election in ensuring democratic governance? 4. Does non-party caretaker government matter for conducting a free, fair and credible election? 5. Does democratic governance depend on multi-dimensional factors and actors? Major findings of this study are: Since the independence of Bangladesh, 10 national elections held in various regimes. 4 out of 10 national elections have been found free, fair and credible which have been conducted by the non-party caretaker government. Rests of the elections are not out of controversy and full of manipulation held under elected government. However, the caretaker government has already been abolished by the AL government through 15th amendment of the constitution. The present AL government is elected by the 10th parliamentary election under incumbent (AL) government, but a major opposition allies (20 parties) lead by BNP boycotted this election and 154 of the total 300 seats being uncontested. As a result, AL again came to the power without a competitive election and most of the national and International election observers including media world consider this election as unfair and the government is suffering from lack of legitimacy. Therefore, the governance of present Bangladesh is not democratic at all and it is to be considered as one party (14 parties’ allies lead by AL) authoritarian governance in the shade of parliamentary governance. Both the position and opposition of the parliament is belonging in 14 parties’ alliances lead by AL.

Keywords: democracy, governance, free, fair and credible elections, Bangladesh

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4558 Adoption and Use of an Electronic Voting System in Ghana

Authors: Isaac Kofi Mensah

Abstract:

The manual system of voting has been the most widely used system of electing representatives around the globe, particularly in Africa. Due to the known numerous problems and challenges associated with the manual system of voting, many countries are migrating to the electronic voting system as a suitable and credible means of electing representatives over the manual paper-based system. This research paper therefore investigated the factors influencing adoption and use of an electronic voting system in Ghana. A total of 400 Questionnaire Instruments (QI) were administered to potential respondents in Ghana, of which 387 responded representing a response rate of 96.75%. The Technology Acceptance Model was used as the theoretical framework for the study. The research model was tested using a simple linear regression analysis with SPSS. A little of over 71.1% of the respondents recommended the Electoral Commission (EC) of Ghana to adopt an electronic voting system in the conduct of public elections in Ghana. The results indicated that all the six predictors such as perceived usefulness (PU), perceived ease of use (PEOU), perceived free and fair elections (PFFF), perceived credible elections (PCE), perceived system integrity (PSI) and citizens trust in the election management body (CTEM) were all positively significant in predicting the readiness of citizens to adopt and use an electronic voting system in Ghana. However, jointly, the hypotheses tested revealed that apart from Perceived Free and Fair Elections and Perceived Credible and Transparent Elections, all the other factors such as PU, Perceived System Integrity and Security and Citizen Trust in the Election Management Body were found to be significant predictors of the Willingness of Ghanaians to use an electronic voting system. All the six factors considered in this study jointly account for about 53.1% of the reasons determining the readiness to adopt and use an electronic voting system in Ghana. The implications of this research finding on elections in Ghana are discussed.

Keywords: credible elections, Election Management Body (EMB), electronic voting, Ghana, Technology Acceptance Model (TAM)

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4557 New Media and the Personal Vote in General Elections: A Comparison of Constituency Level Candidates in the United Kingdom and Japan

Authors: Sean Vincent

Abstract:

Within the academic community, there is a consensus that political parties in established liberal democracies are facing a myriad of organisational challenges as a result of falling membership, weakening links to grass-roots support and rising voter apathy. During the same period of party decline and growing public disengagement political parties have become increasingly professionalised. The professionalisation of political parties owes much to changes in technology, with television becoming the dominant medium for political communication. In recent years, however, it has become clear that a new medium of communication is becoming utilised by political parties and candidates – New Media. New Media, a term hard to define but related to internet based communication, offers a potential revolution in political communication. It can be utilised by anyone with access to the internet and its most widely used platforms of communication such as Facebook and Twitter, are free to use. The advent of Web 2.0 has dramatically changed what can be done with the Internet. Websites now allow candidates at the constituency level to fundraise, organise and set out personalised policies. Social media allows them to communicate with supporters and potential voters practically cost-free. As such candidate dependency on the national party for resources and image now lies open to debate. Arguing that greater candidate independence may be a natural next step in light of the contemporary challenges faced by parties, this paper examines how New Media is being used by candidates at the constituency level to increase their personal vote. The paper will present findings from research carried out during two elections – the Japanese Lower House election of 2014 and the UK general election of 2015. During these elections a sample of candidates, totalling 150 candidates, from the three biggest parties in each country were selected and their new media output, specifically candidate websites, Twitter and Facebook output subjected to content analysis. The analysis examines how candidates are using new media to both become more functionally, through fundraising and volunteer mobilisation and politically, through the promotion of personal/local policies, independent from the national party. In order to validate the results of content analysis this paper will also present evidence from interviews carried out with 17 candidates that stood in the 2014 Japanese Lower House election or 2015 UK general election. With a combination of statistical analysis and interviews, several conclusions can be made about the use of New Media at constituency level. The findings show not just a clear difference in the way candidates from each country are using New Media but also differences within countries based upon the particular circumstances of each constituency. While it has not yet replaced traditional methods of fundraising and activist mobilisation, New Media is also becoming increasingly important in campaign organisation and the general consensus amongst candidates is that its importance will continue to grow along as politics in both countries becomes more diffuse.

Keywords: political campaigns, elections, new media, political communication

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4556 The Role of Twitter Bots in Political Discussion on 2019 European Elections

Authors: Thomai Voulgari, Vasilis Vasilopoulos, Antonis Skamnakis

Abstract:

The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of the European election campaigns (May 23-26, 2019) on Twitter achieving with artificial intelligence tools such as troll factories and automated inauthentic accounts. Our research focuses on the last European Parliamentary elections that took place between 23 and 26 May 2019 specifically in Italy, Greece, Germany and France. It is difficult to estimate how many Twitter users are actually bots (Echeverría, 2017). Detection for fake accounts is becoming even more complicated as AI bots are made more advanced. A political bot can be programmed to post comments on a Twitter account for a political candidate, target journalists with manipulated content or engage with politicians and artificially increase their impact and popularity. We analyze variables related to 1) the scope of activity of automated bots accounts and 2) degree of coherence and 3) degree of interaction taking into account different factors, such as the type of content of Twitter messages and their intentions, as well as the spreading to the general public. For this purpose, we collected large volumes of Twitter accounts of party leaders and MEP candidates between 10th of May and 26th of July based on content analysis of tweets based on hashtags while using an innovative network analysis tool known as MediaWatch.io (https://mediawatch.io/). According to our findings, one of the highest percentage (64.6%) of automated “bot” accounts during 2019 European election campaigns was in Greece. In general terms, political bots aim to proliferation of misinformation on social media. Targeting voters is a way that it can be achieved contribute to social media manipulation. We found that political parties and individual politicians create and promote purposeful content on Twitter using algorithmic tools. Based on this analysis, online political advertising play an important role to the process of spreading misinformation during elections campaigns. Overall, inauthentic accounts and social media algorithms are being used to manipulate political behavior and public opinion.

Keywords: artificial intelligence tools, human-bot interactions, political manipulation, social networking, troll factories

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4555 An Evaluation of Impact of Media on the Electoral Reform Process in Nigeria between 2010–2015

Authors: H. Shola Adeosun, D. Adeoye Odedeji, F. Ajoke Adebiyi

Abstract:

This study examines the impact of media on the electoral process in Nigeria and the roles played by the media in the reform process. Survey research method was adopted as research methodology, and this enables the researcher to use questionnaire, and oral interview to elicit primary data from the respondents was interpreted, analysed and interpreted with statistical tools such as tables, figures, and percentages. The hypothesis formulated were tested with chi-square. The findings revealed that there is significant relationship between the media and electoral reform process in the 2011 and 2015 general elections in Nigeria. The study recommends that electoral committee should implement virile electoral system with the peaceful voting environment. The media should intensify efforts to expose violation of electoral laws; media should play an advocacy role for dialogue and debate on the reform recommendations. The study recommends that media should unite the nation through their reports on peace, national security, national integration and ethnoreligious tolerance and that adequate training should be given to media practitioners on how to report issues relating to elections.

Keywords: evaluation, impact, media, electoral reform process

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4554 Alternation of Executive Power and Democratic Governance in Nigeria: The Role of Independent National Electoral Commission, 1999-2014

Authors: J. Tochukwu Omenma

Abstract:

Buzzword in Nigeria is that democracy has “come to stay”. Politicians in their usual euphoria consider democracy as already consolidated in the country. Politicians linked this assumption to three fundamental indicators – (a) multiparty system; (b) regular elections and (c) absence of military coup after 15 years of democracy in Nigeria. Beyond this assumption, we intend to empirically verify these claims and assumptions, by relying on Huntington’s conceptualization of democratic consolidation. Though, Huntington asserts that multipartism, regular elections and absence of any major obstacle leading to reversal of democracy are significant indicators of democratic consolidation, but the presence of those indicators must result to alternation of executive power for democratic consolidation to occur. In other words, regular conduct of election and existence of multiple political parties are not enough for democratic consolidation, rather free and fair elections. Past elections were characterized of massive fraud and irregularities casting doubts on integrity of electoral management body (EMB) to conduct free and fair elections in Nigeria. There are three existing perspectives that have offered responses to the emasculation of independence of EMB. One is a more popular position indicating that the incumbent party, more than the opposition party, influence the EMB activities with the aim of rigging elections; the other is a more radical perspective that suggests that weakening of EMB power is more associated with the weakest party than with the incumbent; and the last, is that godfather(s) are in direct control of EMB members thereby controlling the process of electoral process to the advantage of the godfather(s). With empirical evidence sourced from the reports of independent election monitors, (European Union, Election Observation Mission in Nigeria) this paper shows at different electoral periods that, in terms of influencing election outcomes, the incumbent and godfather have been more associated with influencing election results than the opposition. The existing nature of executive power in Nigeria provides a plausible explanation for the incumbent’s overbearing influence thereby limiting opportunity for free and fair elections and by extension undermining the process of democratic consolidation in Nigeria.

Keywords: political party, democracy, democratic consolidation, election, godfatherism

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4553 Electoral Violence and Women in Politics: A Case Study of Pakistan

Authors: Mariam Arif

Abstract:

The objective of the current study is to find out the electoral violence against women and its implications on their political participation. This paper is a qualitative study to get an in-depth analysis of the phenomenon. This study used questionnaires and interviews for findings. This paper attempts to study electoral violence and women in politics in Pakistan. The study concluded that women are subjected to different categories of violence defined as physical violence that involves sexual and bodily harm to a politically active woman or to people associated with her. Social and psychological violence includes class difference, stress, social limitations, family pressure and character assassination. Economic violence is defined as a systematic restriction of access to economic resources available to women thus hinder women active participation in politics (elections). All these violence against women in elections are threat to the integrity of the electoral process of the country that eventually affects women’s participation as voters, party candidates, election officials and political party leaders. It also undermines the free and fair democratic process. This qualitative paper shows a significant negative relationship between electoral violence and women participation in politics.

Keywords: elections, politics, violence, women

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4552 Health as an Agenda in Indian Politics: A Study of Election Manifestos in 16th General Elections

Authors: Kiran Bala

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Health, education and employment opportunities available for a common citizen reflect the development status of a country. Health of an individual affects the growth of a country in every aspect. According to a study by WHO, India is estimated to lose more than $237 billion of its GDP over the period 2006-15 on account of premature death and morbidity from Non-communicable diseases alone. Each year 37 million people fall below poverty line due to high expenditure on health services they have to incur. Falling sick puts a double burden on them in terms of loss of income and expenditure on health care which pushes them further into debt and poverty. Adding to the gravity of situation, public spending on health in India has itself declined after liberalization from 1.3% of GDP in 1990 to 0.9% in 1999. The Approach Paper of the Government of India to the Twelfth Five Year Plan indicated that health expenditure alone as a per cent of GDP was about 1.4 per cent (B.E.) in 2011-12. It also mentioned that if one included expenditure on rural water supply and sanitation, the figure would be about 1.8 per cent. Given the abysmally low level of priority accorded to health in Indian economic policy, it becomes rather important to study the representation of health in the Indian public sphere. To this end, this study examines the prioritization of health in the public policy agenda of the national/regional political parties as evidenced in their election manifestos at a time when the nation is poised to go for the General Elections. The paper also focuses attention on the prioritization of health in the public perception as evidenced in their reasons for their preferences for a particular party or individual contestant. To arrive at the reasons for the priority level accorded by the political actors and the citizens, the study uses Focus groups of health policy makers, media persons, medical practitioners and voters. Collected data will be analysed in the theoretical framework of spiral of silence and agenda setting theory.

Keywords: health, election manifestos, public perception, policies

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4551 Newspaper Headlines as Tool for Political Propaganda in Nigeria: Trend Analysis of Implications on Four Presidential Elections

Authors: Muhammed Jamiu Mustapha, Jamiu Folarin, Stephen Obiri Agyei, Rasheed Ademola Adebiyi, Mutiu Iyanda Lasisi

Abstract:

The role of the media in political discourse cannot be overemphasized as they form an important part of societal development. The media institution is considered the fourth estate of the realm because it serves as a check and balance to the arms of government (Executive, Legislature and Judiciary) especially in a democratic setup, and makes public office holders accountable to the people. They scrutinize the political candidates and conduct a holistic analysis of the achievement of the government in order to make the people’s representative accountable to the electorates. The media in Nigeria play a seminal role in shaping how people vote during elections. Newspaper headlines are catchy phrases that easily capture the attention of the audience and call them (audience) to action. Research conducted on newspaper headlines looks at the linguistic aspect and how the tenses used has a resultant effect on peoples’ attitude and behaviour. Communication scholars have also conducted studies that interrogate whether newspaper headlines influence peoples' voting patterns and decisions. Propaganda and negative stories about political opponents are stapling features in electioneering campaigns. Nigerian newspaper readers have the characteristic of scanning newspaper headlines. And the question is whether politicians effectively have played into this tendency to brand opponents negatively, based on half-truths and inadequate information. This study illustrates major trends in the Nigerian political landscape looking at the past four presidential elections and frames the progress of the research in the extant body of political propaganda research in Africa. The study will use the quantitative content analysis of newspaper headlines from 2007 to 2019 to be able to ascertain whether newspaper headlines had any effect on the election results of the presidential elections during these years. This will be supplemented by Key Informant Interviews of political scientists or experts to draw further inferences from the quantitative data. Drawing on newspaper headlines of selected newspapers in Nigeria that have a political propaganda angle for the presidential elections, the analysis will correspond to and complements extant descriptions of how the field of political propaganda has been developed in Nigeria, providing evidence of four presidential elections that have shaped Nigerian politics. Understanding the development of the behavioural change of the electorates provide useful context for trend analysis in political propaganda communication. The findings will contribute to how newspaper headlines are used partly or wholly to decide the outcome of presidential elections in Nigeria.

Keywords: newspaper headlines, political propaganda, presidential elections, trend analysis

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4550 Media Representation of Romanian Migrants in the Italian Media: A Comparative Study

Authors: Paula-Catalina Meirosu

Abstract:

The economic migration (intra-EU) is a topic of debate in the public space in both countries of origin and countries of destination. Since the 1990s, after the collapse of communist regimes and then the accession of some former communist countries to the EU, the migratory flows of migrants (including Romanian migrants) to EU countries has been increased constantly. Italy is one of the main countries of destination among Romanians since at the moment Italy hosts more than one million Romanian migrants. Based on an interdisciplinary analytical framework focused on the theories in the field of transnationalism, media and migration studies and critical media analysis, this paper investigates the media construction of intra-EU economic migration in the Italian press from two main perspectives. The first point of view is the media representation of Romanian migrants in the Italian press in a specific context: the EU elections in 2014. The second one explores the way in which Romanian journalists use the media in the destinations countries (such as Italy) as a source to address the issue of migration. In this context, the paper focuses on online articles related to the Romanian migrants’ representation in the media before and during the EU elections in two newspapers (La Repubblica from Italy and Adevarul from Romania), published during January-May 2014. The methodology is based on a social-constructivist approach, predominantly discursive and includes elements of critical discourse analysis (CDA) to identify the patterns of Romanian migrants in the Italian press as well as strategies for building categories, identities, and roles of migrants. The aim of such an approach is to find out the dynamic of the media discourse on migration from a destination country in the light of a European electoral context (EU elections) and based on the results, to propose scenarios for the elections to be held this year.

Keywords: migration, media discourse, Romanian migrants, transnationalism

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4549 Electoral Reforms and Voting Participation of Persons with Disabilities in 2019 General Elections in Nigeria

Authors: Afeez Kolawole Shittu

Abstract:

Democracy as practiced across the globe is sustained with the increase participation of all eligible voters irrespective of class, race, colour, and disabilities. However, there is a perception within the contemporary African society that people with disability (PWDs) belongs to charity and welfare. This is exacerbated with little understanding among African counties including Nigeria that persons with disability have fundamental rights inevitably rooted in the constitution. This significant viewpoint has continued to militate against the social inclusion of persons with disabilities in various aspects of societal lives including their political participation It is instructive to note that the political right of PWDs has been protected by various international conventions. Article 29 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights and Dignities for Persons with Disability (CRPD) guaranteed the participation of persons with disability in the political process. Domesticating and ratification of this right has been a challenge for many African countries including Nigeria. Against the backdrop, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the body saddled with the responsibility of conducting elections in Nigeria provided forum for the participation of persons with disability in election through implementations of electoral act. Section 56 (1) and (2) of the 2010 Electoral Act (as amended) provide for voting participation of persons with disability. This study examines the implementation of the electoral act and how it impacts the voting participation of persons with disability vis-à-vis other challenges affecting the participation of PWDs in electoral process in Nigeria’s 2019 general election. This paper draws on mixed method in sourcing relevant information from the respondents. Interview will be conducted among INEC officials, Civil Society Organisations, Joint National Association of Persons with Disability (JONAPWD). Questionnaire and Focus Group Discussion will be held among different forms of PWDs. The data will be analysed using appropriate descriptive statistics and inferential statistics, as well as thematic content analysis. The study will enlighten understanding on the awareness of the political rights of PWDs as well as improving their electoral participation for sustainable democracy in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country.

Keywords: electoral reforms, voting participation, persons with disabilities

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4548 Analyzing the Efficiency of Initiatives Taken against Disinformation during Election Campaigns: Case Study of Young Voters

Authors: Fatima-Zohra Ghedir

Abstract:

Social media platforms have been actively working on solutions and combined their efforts with media, policy makers, educators and researchers to protect citizens and prevent interferences in information, political discourses and elections. Facebook, for instance, deleted fake accounts, implemented fake accounts and fake content detection algorithms, partnered with news agencies to manually fact check content and changed its newsfeeds display. Twitter and Instagram regularly communicate on their efforts and notify their users of improvements and safety guidelines. More funds have been allocated to media literacy programs to empower citizens in prevision of the coming elections. This paper investigates the efficiency of these initiatives and analyzes the metrics to measure their success or failure. The objective is also to determine the segments of population more prone to fall in disinformation traps during the elections despite the measures taken over the last four years. This study will also examine the groups who were positively impacted by these measures. This paper relies on both desk and field methodologies. For this study, a survey was administered to French students aged between 17 and 29 years old. Semi-guided interviews were conducted on a similar audience. The analysis of the survey and of the interviews show that respondents were exposed to the initiatives described above and are aware of the existence of disinformation issues. However, they do not understand what disinformation really entails or means. For instance, for most of them, disinformation is synonymous of the opposite point of view without taking into account the truthfulness of the content. Besides, they still consume and believe the information shared by their friends and family, with little questioning about the ways their closed ones get informed.

Keywords: democratic elections, disinformation, foreign interference, social media, success metrics

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4547 Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms in Crisis as Viewed during Bangladesh Parliamentary Election-2018 and Afterwards: A Contestant's Perspective on Social Measures

Authors: Mohammad S. Islam

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Elections in Bangladesh are always controversial, and sometimes it becomes a violent affair when state power is combined with politics. Despite the commitment of the ruling party- the polling government to ensure free, fair, and credible elections, the participants of opposition parties and the general voters became very disappointed, terribly frustrated, and severely shocked. It happened when numerous claims of serious irregularities of vote rigging and violence came out in broad daylight during the election. This paper addresses the issues of how the ruling party created frightening and a horror situation to make people silent over electoral fraud and violent incidents, including gang rape. It also seeks to demonstrate that election-2018 was simply the deceptive action of the ruling party to legitimate their power, but not to provide a minimum opportunity for voters to exercise their fundamental right to vote. The fundamental freedom and the rule of law seemed to be ignored completely in this election process and afterwards. With the help of state machinery, the government of the ruling party violated human rights, restricted fundamental freedoms, and humiliated social protection & dignity. The contestant’s views as witnessed and relevant literatures are cited first for conceptual understanding. Then, the paper will examine how a new dimension of circumstantial social measures related to sustained protection can reduce all kinds of violence against humanity towards establishing a peaceful democratic society. Finally, this paper interprets the key findings and considers wider implications.

Keywords: electoral fraud, human rights, sustained protection, social measures, vote rigging

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4546 Women in Malaysia: Exploring the Democratic Space in Politics

Authors: Garima Sarkar

Abstract:

The main purpose of the present paper is to investigate the development and progress achieved by women in the decision-making sphere and to access the level of their political-participation in Parliamentary Elections of Malaysia and their status in overall Malaysian political domain. The paper also focuses on the role and status of women in the major political parties of the state both the parties in power as well as the parties in opposition. The primary objective of the study is to focus on the major hindrances and social malpractices faced by women and also Muslim women’s access to justice in Malaysia. It also demonstrates the linkages between national policy initiatives and the advancement of women in various areas, such as economics, health, employment, politics, power-sharing, social development and law and most importantly evaluating their status in the dominant religion of the nation. In Malaysia, women’s political participation is being challenged from every nook and corner of the society. A high percentage of women are getting educated, forming a significant labor force in present day Malaysia, who can be employed in the manufacturing sector, retail trade, hotels and restaurant, agriculture etc. Women today consist of almost half of the population and exceed boys in the tertiary sector by a ratio of 80:20. Despite these achievements, however, women’s labor force engagement remains confined to ‘ traditional women’s occupations’, such as those of primary school teachers, data entry clerks and organizing polls during elections and motivating other less enlightened women to cast their votes. In the political arena, the past few General Elections of Malaysia clearly exhibited a slight change in the number of women Members of Parliament from 10.6% (20 out of 193 Parliamentary seats in 1999) to 10.5% (23 out of 219 Parliamentary seats in 2004). Amidst the political posturing for the recent General Election in 2013 of Malaysia, women’s political participation remains a prime concern in Malaysia. It is evident that while much of the attention of women revolves around charitable assistance, they are much less likely to be portrayed as active participants in electoral politics and governance. According to the electoral roll for the third quarter of 2012, 6,578,916 women are registered as voters. They represent 50.2% of the total number of the registered voters. However, this parity in terms of voter registration is not reflected in the number of elected representatives at the Parliamentary level. Only 10.4% of sitting Members of Parliament are women. The women’s participation in the legislature and executive branches are important since their presence brings the spotlight squarely on issues that have been historically neglected and overlooked. In the recent 2013 General Elections in Malaysia out of 35 full ministerial position only two, or 5.7% have been filled by women. In each of the 2009, 2010, and in the present 2013 Cabinet members, there have only been two women ministers, with this number reduced to one briefly when the Prime Minister appointed himself placeholder in the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development. In the recent past, in its Election Manifesto, Barisan Nasional made a pledge of ‘increasing the number of women participating in national decision-making processes’. Even after such pledges, the Malaysian leadership has failed to mirror the strong presence of women in leadership positions of public life which primarily includes politics, the judiciary and in business. There has been a strong urge to political parties by various gender-sensitive groups to nominate more women as candidates for contesting elections at the Parliamentary as well as at the State level. The democratization process will never be truly democratic without a proper gender agenda and representation. Although Malaysia signed the Beijing Platform for Action document in 1995, the state has a long way to go in enhancing the participation of women in every segment of Malaysian political, economic and cultural. There has been a small percentage of women representation in decision-making bodies compared to the 30% targeted by the Beijing Platform for Action. Thus, democratization in terms of representation of women in leadership positions and decision-making positions or bodies is essential since it’s a move towards a qualitative transformation of women in shaping national decision-making processes. The democratization process has to ensure women’s full participation and their goals of development and their full participation has to be included in the process of formulating and shaping the developmental goals.

Keywords: women, gender equality, Islam, democratization, political representation, Parliament

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4545 System-level Factors, Presidential Coattails and Mass Preferences: Dynamics of Party Nationalization in Contemporary Brazil (1990-2014)

Authors: Kazuma Mizukoshi

Abstract:

Are electoral politics in contemporary Brazil still local in organization and focus? The importance of this question lies in its paradoxical trajectories. First, often coupled with institutional and sociological ‘barriers’ (e.g. the selection and election of candidates relatively loyal to the local party leadership, the predominance of territorialized electoral campaigns, and the resilience of political clientelism), the regionalization of electoral politics has been a viable and practical solution especially for pragmatic politicians in some Latin American countries. On the other hand, some leftist parties that once served as minor opposition forces at the time of foundational or initial elections have certainly expanded vote shares. Some were eventually capable of holding most (if not a majority) legislative seats since the 1990s. Though not yet rigorously demonstrated, theoretically implicit in the rise of leftist parties in legislative elections is the gradual (if not complete) nationalization of electoral support—meaning the growing equality of a party’s vote share across electoral districts and its change over time. This study will develop four hypotheses to explain the dynamics of party nationalization in contemporary Brazil: district magnitude, ethnic and class fractionalization of each district, voting intentions in federal and state executive elections, and finally the left-right stances of electorates. The study will demonstrate these hypotheses by closely working with the Brazilian Electoral Study (2002-2014).

Keywords: party nationalization, presidential coattails, Left, Brazil

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4544 Identifying Concerned Citizen Communication Style During the State Parliamentary Elections in Bavaria

Authors: Volker Mittendorf, Andre Schmale

Abstract:

In this case study, we want to explore the Twitter-use of candidates during the state parliamentary elections-year 2018 in Bavaria, Germany. This paper focusses on the seven parties that probably entered the parliament. Against this background, the paper classifies the use of language as populism which itself is considered as a political communication style. First, we determine the election campaigns which started in the years 2017 on Twitter, after that we categorize the posting times of the different direct candidates in order to derive ideal types from our empirical data. Second, we have done the exploration based on the dictionary of concerned citizens which contains German political language of the right and the far right. According to that, we are analyzing the corpus with methods of text mining and social network analysis, and afterwards we display the results in a network of words of concerned citizen communication style (CCCS).

Keywords: populism, communication style, election, text mining, social media

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4543 From Text to Data: Sentiment Analysis of Presidential Election Political Forums

Authors: Sergio V Davalos, Alison L. Watkins

Abstract:

User generated content (UGC) such as website post has data associated with it: time of the post, gender, location, type of device, and number of words. The text entered in user generated content (UGC) can provide a valuable dimension for analysis. In this research, each user post is treated as a collection of terms (words). In addition to the number of words per post, the frequency of each term is determined by post and by the sum of occurrences in all posts. This research focuses on one specific aspect of UGC: sentiment. Sentiment analysis (SA) was applied to the content (user posts) of two sets of political forums related to the US presidential elections for 2012 and 2016. Sentiment analysis results in deriving data from the text. This enables the subsequent application of data analytic methods. The SASA (SAIL/SAI Sentiment Analyzer) model was used for sentiment analysis. The application of SASA resulted with a sentiment score for each post. Based on the sentiment scores for the posts there are significant differences between the content and sentiment of the two sets for the 2012 and 2016 presidential election forums. In the 2012 forums, 38% of the forums started with positive sentiment and 16% with negative sentiment. In the 2016 forums, 29% started with positive sentiment and 15% with negative sentiment. There also were changes in sentiment over time. For both elections as the election got closer, the cumulative sentiment score became negative. The candidate who won each election was in the more posts than the losing candidates. In the case of Trump, there were more negative posts than Clinton’s highest number of posts which were positive. KNIME topic modeling was used to derive topics from the posts. There were also changes in topics and keyword emphasis over time. Initially, the political parties were the most referenced and as the election got closer the emphasis changed to the candidates. The performance of the SASA method proved to predict sentiment better than four other methods in Sentibench. The research resulted in deriving sentiment data from text. In combination with other data, the sentiment data provided insight and discovery about user sentiment in the US presidential elections for 2012 and 2016.

Keywords: sentiment analysis, text mining, user generated content, US presidential elections

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4542 Effectiveness of Economic Sanctions on Nuclear Non-Proliferation: Constructing Domestic Effects of International Sanctions in the Iranian Presidential Election of 2013

Authors: Adel Hawatmeh

Abstract:

This study aims to explore how the effects of economic sanctions against nuclear proliferation affect nuclear policy choices through elite discourse in general elections. Sanctions on Iran 2006-2015 were continuous, inclusive, mandatory, and collective CIMC. Sanctions impacts have affected significantly Iranian macroeconomic indicators such as GDP growth, inflation, and unemployment. In addition, mismanagement has also contributed minorly to the economic harms. These causes have been portrayed and articulated differently among elite discourse in Iran during the 2013 presidential election campaigning, especially by the two dominant candidates. For a better understanding of Iran’s elite discourse, this study uses Norman Fairclough’s three-dimensional framework in analysing Iran’s elite discourse of domestic newspapers “Shargh & Keyhan”, Mr. Muhammad Baqer Ghalibaf, and Mr. Hassan Rouhani. The main results of the research show that sanctions’ effects have contributed significantly in constructing elite discourses of domestic newspapers “Shargh & Keyhan”, Mr. Muhammad Baqer Ghalibaf, and Mr. Hassan Rouhani during the presidential election of 2013; economic issues have been articulated more than any other issues such as political or social ones; Rouhani’s discourse was convergent with Shargh newspaper both have ranked the effects of economic sanctions as the main cause of economic harms. Rouhani’s announced policies and approach were convergent with Shargh newspaper in the way of solving the economic hardship, that is, reconsidering current Iran’s nuclear choice by renegotiating the nuclear programme in order to get rid of economic sanctions; the economic issue was the main priority of the voters; Muhammad Ghalibaf ranked the economic mismanagement as the main cause of economic harms in convergence with Keyhan newspaper. Ghalibaf and Keyhan were convergent that the effects of economic sanctions were not significant and the way to solve the economic hardship is to enhance the effectiveness of economic management and no need to change the current choice of Iran’s nuclear policy. The convergent policies of Rouhani and voters’ priorities might contribute significantly to his victory in 2013 and consequently reached a nuclear deal through renegotiating the nuclear issue with the 5+1 in 2015 according to the JCPOA agreement. This topic is significant because it explores the crucial role of economic sanctions in influencing nuclear choices through elite discourses in general elections that affects voter preferences. Methodology:This is a qualitative study that seeks to understand in depth the case study of Iran, using discourse analysis.

Keywords: economic sanctions, international security, Iran, discourse analysis, nuclear non-proliferation.

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4541 Legal Problems with the Thai Political Party Establishment

Authors: Paiboon Chuwatthanakij

Abstract:

Each of the countries around the world has different ways of management and many of them depend on people to administrate their country. Thailand, for example, empowers the sovereignty of Thai people under constitution; however, our Thai voting system is not able to flow fast enough under the current Political management system. The sovereignty of Thai people is addressing this problem through representatives during current elections, in order to set a new policy for the countries ideology to change in the House and the Cabinet. This is particularly important in a democracy to be developed under our current political institution. The Organic Act on Political Parties 2007 is the establishment we have today that is causing confrontations within the establishment. There are many political parties that will soon be abolished. Many political parties have already been subsidized. This research study is to analyze the legal problems with the political party establishment under the Organic Act on Political Parties 2007. This will focus on the freedom of each political establishment compared to an effective political operation. Textbooks and academic papers will be referenced from studies home and abroad. The study revealed that Organic Act on Political Parties 2007 has strict provisions on the political structure over the number of members and the number of branches involved within political parties system. Such operations shall be completed within one year; but under the existing laws the small parties are not able to participate with the bigger parties. The cities are capable of fulfilling small political party requirements but fail to become coalesced because the current laws won't allow them to be united as one. It is important to allow all independent political parties to join our current political structure. Board members can’t help the smaller parties to become a large organization under the existing Thai laws. Creating a new establishment that functions efficiently throughout all branches would be one solution to these legal problems between all political parties. With this new operation, individual political parties can participate with the bigger parties during elections. Until current political institutions change their system to accommodate public opinion, these current Thai laws will continue to be a problem with all political parties in Thailand.

Keywords: coalesced, political party, sovereignty, elections

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4540 Cultural Cognition and Voting: Understanding Values and Perceived Risks in the Colombian Population

Authors: Andrea N. Alarcon, Julian D. Castro, Gloria C. Rojas, Paola A. Vaca, Santiago Ortiz, Gustavo Martinez, Pablo D. Lemoine

Abstract:

Recently, electoral results across many countries have shown to be inconsistent with rational decision theory, which states that individuals make decisions based on maximizing benefits and reducing risks. An alternative explanation has emerged: Fear and rage-driven vote have been proved to be highly effective for political persuasion and mobilization. This phenomenon has been evident in the 2016 elections in the United States, 2006 elections in Mexico, 1998 elections in Venezuela, and 2004 elections in Bolivia. In Colombia, it has occurred recently in the 2016 plebiscite for peace and 2018 presidential elections. The aim of this study is to explain this phenomenon using cultural cognition theory, referring to the psychological predisposition individuals have to believe that its own and its peer´s behavior is correct and, therefore, beneficial to the entire society. Cultural cognition refers to the tendency of individuals to fit perceived risks, and factual beliefs into group shared values; the Cultural Cognition Worldview Scales (CCWS) measures cultural perceptions through two different dimensions: Individualism-communitarianism and hierarchy-egalitarianism. The former refers to attitudes towards social dominance based on conspicuous and static characteristics (sex, ethnicity or social class), while the latter refers to attitudes towards a social ordering in which it is expected from individuals to guarantee their own wellbeing without society´s or government´s intervention. A probabilistic national sample was obtained from different polls from the consulting and public opinion company Centro Nacional de Consultoría. Sociodemographic data was obtained along with CCWS scores, a subjective measure of left-right ideological placement and vote intention for 2019 Mayor´s elections were also included in the questionnaires. Finally, the question “In your opinion, what is the greatest risk Colombia is facing right now?” was included to identify perceived risk in the population. Preliminary results show that Colombians are highly distributed among hierarchical communitarians and egalitarian individualists (30.9% and 31.7%, respectively), and to a less extent among hierarchical individualists and egalitarian communitarians (19% and 18.4%, respectively). Males tended to be more hierarchical (p < .000) and communitarian (p=.009) than females. ANOVA´s revealed statistically significant differences between groups (quadrants) for the level of schooling, left-right ideological orientation, and stratum (p < .000 for all), and proportion differences revealed statistically significant differences for groups of age (p < .001). Differences and distributions for vote intention and perceived risks are still being processed and results are yet to be analyzed. Results show that Colombians are differentially distributed among quadrants in regard to sociodemographic data and left-right ideological orientation. These preliminary results indicate that this study may shed some light on why Colombians vote the way they do, and future qualitative data will show the fears emerging from the identified values in the CCWS and the relation this has with vote intention.

Keywords: communitarianism, cultural cognition, egalitarianism, hierarchy, individualism, perceived risks

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4539 Democracy Leadership and Good Governance in Nigerias Fourth Republic

Authors: Salisu Adamu Abdullahi, Yusuf Abdullahi Manu

Abstract:

Nigeria returned to a democratically elected government on May 29, 1999. This signaled the beginning of the journey into the Fourth Republic. The return has received popular endorsement by the electorates as the level of enthusiasm was high due to the yearnings and expectations by the electorate that democracy will bring about the much-desired change required by the general mass. As democracy would allow for popular participation through periodic elections and so on. The paper examines democracy, leadership, and challenges of good governance in Nigerias Fourth Republic. It utilizes secondary source of data and content analysis as a methodology. It argues that Nigerias practice of democracy over the years is marred by flagrant abuse of the principles of good governance by the ruling elite. This has posed threats to the survival of democracy due to non-adherence to one of the cardinal principles of democracy which is good governance. The paper recommends among others that the anti-corruption law is amended in such a way that death penalties be issued to those found wanting by the law.

Keywords: democracy, democratic consolidation, challenges, good governance

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4538 Energy Trends in Rural South Africa: A Case Study of the Mnweni Rural Community in the Province of Kwazulu-Natal

Authors: Noel Chellan

Abstract:

Energy is the life-blood of development. All human societies have been and still are dependent on energy – some societies more than others. With regard to energy in South Africa, previous policies of the apartheid regime neglected the energy needs of poor black communities in general – and rural communities in particular. Since South Africa’s first democratic elections in 1994 – whilst millions of South African households have received electricity from the national electricity grid, there are still many rural communities that are still experiencing challenges in relation to both electricity deprivation as well as provision. This paper looks at the energy-mix of the Mnweni rural community in South Africa and argues that understanding energy is key to understanding the nature and forms of development of any community or country, for that matter. The paper engages with the energy trends in the rural community of Mnweni from the days of apartheid until 2021. It also looks at agricultural practises from an energy perspective. Such an energy perspective will enable one to assess the pace and scale of development in rural Mnweni.

Keywords: rural, energy, development, apartheid

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4537 Women, Ethnic Minorities and Electoral Success

Authors: Karen Lesley Webster, Charles Crothers

Abstract:

As the population of the Auckland region in New Zealand becomes markedly more super-diverse, the question of fair and effective representation becomes increasingly relevant. This paper explores who stood and who was elected to local office, in the three Auckland triennial local elections, following the 2010 amalgamation of the regions local authorities. It addresses the question of how representative the electoral candidates and elected members of local government in Auckland were of the diverse population they serve. A quantitative analysis of the gender and ethnicity of the Auckland Council candidates and elected members in 2013, 2016, and 2019 triennial elections was undertaken, and the gender and ethnicity compared with that of the Auckland population. Our findings show that under the two-tiered shared governance model established by the Local Government Act (Auckland Council) 2009, electoral candidates have become more ethnically and gender representative of Aucklanders at the local level, while at the regional level, divergence from predominantly New Zealand European, male local representatives is emerging, albeit with less pace. These findings warrant further investigation, but overall, the research presents a cautiously optimistic picture of Auckland local democracy in terms of increasing representational diversity.

Keywords: local government, representation, diversity, gender, ethnicity

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4536 Political Party Mobilization Strategies in Ghana: A Comparative Analysis of Three Constituencies

Authors: F. Agbele

Abstract:

Elections are core democratic institutions. Consequently, voter participation during elections is paramount to democratic governance as it serves as a medium to legitimize authority and make the privileges of electoral democracy meaningful to citizens. To this effect, the topic of voter mobilization and subsequent turnout level have been largely studied in advanced democracies. In young and consolidating democracies, the debate has, however, revolves around the huge reliance on ethnic and regional appeals. According to the Author’s knowledge, studies on electoral mobilization especially within the African context have argued the use of ethnic linkages by political parties to mobilize voters during elections. Literature has however not differentiated between the level of democratic dispensation among African countries and the use of ethnic linkages. The question, however, is whether the state of the country’s democracy determines the strategies employed by political parties to induce voter participation. In other words, do parties simply play ethno-regional cards as strongly suggested by literature or will consider an arrayed of strategies to mobilize voters? Additionally, studies have not differentiated the impact of mobilization strategy within a country, i.e. between high to low turnout areas. They have also not distinguished between strategies employed by an incumbent or an opposition party. This paper, therefore, is a comparative analysis of voter mobilization in Ghana. It uses original survey and interview data from three constituencies in Ghana: Nanton, Assin North, and Ellembelle, which are typical cases of high, average and low turnout areas, respectively. The data were concurrently collected during fieldworks conducted in November 2016 to February 2017, and again from July to August 2017. The study found that political parties within a consolidating democracy employ a blend of strategies to ensure turnout by both parties’ faithful and swing voters. The dominant strategies used depends on whether the party is an incumbent or in opposition. While an incumbent may depend more on personalistic and clientelistic strategies, parties in opposition will largely use programmatic strategies, which entails making many campaign promises. Additionally, opposition parties do use clientelistic tactics, but not on the same level as the incumbent. Similarly, within the context of this study, the use of ethnic linkage by political parties to mobilize voters has not been found to be as strong as suggested in the literature. Further, location was key in determining the strategy to use. In all, the consolidation process of a democratic country like Ghana means the change of mobilization strategies used by political parties, which entail a gradual shift from ethnic linkages to programmatic and other forms of non-programmatic strategies.

Keywords: comparative analysis, elections, mobilization strategies, voter turnout

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