Table of Contents
Political elections refer to the formal process that is used for selecting a person for public office or rejecting or accepting the proposition through voting. The elections were used in the ancient Greece and Rome in the entire medieval period to select leaders who comprise the pope or holy roman emperor. The modern election, however, which entails public election of the government officials did not just come about until the start of the 17th century when the representation concept was advanced in Europe and the northern part of America. Several books deal with the wrongs of the political elections, but most of these books are related to the wrongdoings in the African countries where democracy is still weak, and the leaders tend to remain in power even if the power of the majority has proposed that they should leave. Some of the wrongs of political elections include suffrage which is the question of who will vote or not in a political election. The electoral system is also flawed where the detailed constitutional arrangements as well as the voting system that transform voter to the political decision. Further, the use of the secret ballot is one of the relatively latest development though it is seen as open of the important aspect regarding free and fair elections since it helps in reducing occurrences of the intimidation. Nonetheless, in the event an election is called, the political candidates and their supporters use different means to influence the policy by directly competing for the votes with the other competitors in what is termed as campaigns this makes it more expensive which is not good for the candidates. In most countries that have a rule of law that is weaker, the obvious reasons as to why the elections do not meet the international standards of being fair and transparent are due to the interference by the incumbent leadership, the application of the unfair rules in the elections. More so, there is campaign interference, tampering with the mechanism of election which comprises going against the rules of the secret ballot, stuffing of ballots, damaging the voting machines as well as destroying the important elements of the ballot papers, suppression of voter. This, however, can be rectified through providing a conducive environment where all the candidates, whether in opposition or incumbent, are in a position to campaign freely without any intimidation. Additionally, there is need to ensure that the electoral system is working well, elimination of the unfair rules which affect the fairness of the election, and having an informed electoral debate where all the stakeholders are involved in finding the solutions to the issues that are likely to affect the political election in any given country.
Political elections refer to the formal process that is used for selecting a person for public office or rejecting or accepting the proposition through voting. It is thus vital to differentiate between substance and the form of elections. In some instances, there is the existence of electoral forms, but the substance is missing since some of the eligible voters do not have a genuine and free choice between the available alternatives. Most countries carry out elections in at least the formal sense though most of them do not have competitive election especially in the instances where one party is not allowed to participate in an election or the election process is highly comprised (Schudson, 1998). The election has been used as the main mechanism of which the modern representative of democracy has been operating starting from the 17th century. Election process can fill the positions in the judiciary, legislative as well as executive including the both regional and local governments. Further, the process is also widely used in the business and private organizations, corporations and voluntary associations.
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The common use of the elections as a tool for selecting representative in the modern democracies is in contrary to the democratic archetype practices in the early Athens. Here, the elections were taken as oligarchic institutions where most of the political leaders were sorted to fill the position which were commonly known as allotments, where the holders of the office were lot chosen. The electoral reforms discuss the introduction of the electoral system that is fair which not in place was at the time or enhancing the effectiveness of the existing election process. In this case, psephology was used which is a term used to describe the outcomes as well as other statistics that are connected to elections particularly with the view of anticipating the future outcomes. The word elect means “to make decisions or to choose” hence some forms of the ballot which comprise referendums are also referred to as elections particularly in the United States of America.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
In most countries that have the weak rule of law, the primary reason as to why the elections in these countries do not meet the international standards to be called free and fair is the political interference by the incumbent administration. In this case, the dictator leadership can resort to using the power vested upon them to execute martial law, the physical implementation of the election mechanism, censorship or police to remain in power regardless of the popular opinion in that favors their removal from power (Schudson, 1998. On the other hand, member of the specific faction in the legislative arm of the government may utilize the majority power to pass laws that are criminal with regards to power balance in the body from shifting to the other faction as a result of elections. Nonetheless, other entities that are non-governmental can also play a role in interfering with the elections. This can be through verbal intimidation, physical force, or even fraud that can lead to the improper casting or vote tallying. Monitoring as well as reducing the frauds related to the elections in many countries is the ongoing process especially with those countries having strong a free and fair elections. Several issues prevent an election to be free and fair such as tampering with the election process, interfering with campaigns, and the establishment of the unfair rules, and lack of transparent political debate. All these issues in most cases lead to problems since the aggrieved party will try to fight for the rights while the other party will attempt to protect the evil deeds. Due to misunderstanding, there is an eruption of violence between the supporters of the rival parties which results in loss of life, loss of property, and adverse effects on the economic development. This is since the investors will shy away from investing in the country and also the tourism sector will be affected due to political instability in the country. Therefore, research will explore the wrongdoings in the political elections that make the election not met the international standards of fair, transparent, credible and verifiable elections. The research will begin by introducing the history of the political elections which entails the methods that were used, analyze the literature on the book, journals, newspapers, and articles that address issues affecting the political elections and finally summarize the findings of the literature review.
History of political elections
The elections were used in the ancient Greece and Rome in the entire medieval period to select leaders who comprise the pope or holy roman emperor. Further, the verdict era of India the raja were elected using gana. In this case, raja was a member of the warrior class and was a typical son of the former raja. Nonetheless, members of gana had the final say. Even during the rime of Sangman, people elected their leaders through vote casting on the ballot boxes (in this case it was pots) which were tied using a rope and sealed. After all the members have voted through the ballot box, the pot was opened, and the counting of votes begins. During these times, the Pala king Gopala reigned between 750s-770CE. In initial medieval Bengal was elected by a small group of chieftains. These were the most common kind of election witnessed in this contemporary society in the region (Schudson, 1998). Further, in the Chola Empire in 920CE, in the present-day Tamil Nadu, the population were using the palm leaves during the selection of their village representatives. In this scenario, the leaves having the names of the candidates were placed in a pot made of mud. In selecting the representative, a small boy was requested to scoop as many leaves as the available elective positions. This system was commonly referred to as the udavolai system. The name that was picked by the young boy was the final member chosen by the group to represent them in their issues in the village.
Also, the ancient Arabs employed the electoral process in choosing their caliph, Ali, and Uthman during the early days of the medieval Rashidun caliphate. The modern election however which entails public election of the government officials did not just come about till the start of the 17th century when the representation concept was advanced in Europe and the northern part of America.
After the idea spreading to different parts of the world, the suffrage question, particularly against the minority, has been a common issue in the history of elections in various parts of the world. Males are the most dominant group of the representatives in the northern America, Europe and different parts of the world. The initial elections in the United States and the United Kingdom we dominated by the ruling or landed class males. Nonetheless, the by the year 1920s, the entire North America as well as western European democracies had a common adult male suffrage except Switzerland and several other countries also started suffrage for women. Regardless of the legally accepted universal suffrage for male adults, other political barriers were advanced to derail fair election access and transparent election among all the eligible candidates. This has been extended to the modern political election process where different wrongs are committed which include rigging, unfair election practices, gender discrimination, misuse of the public resources among other practices are still in play.
Several books deal with the wrongs of the political elections. However, most of these books are related to the wrongdoings in the African countries which democracy is still weak, and the leaders tend to remain in power even if the power of the majority has proposed that they should leave. This, therefore, limits the literature scope consulted for political elections. Nonetheless, the same wrings that is happening in these African countries can also happen in other countries in other continents. Thus, since the qualitative assessment is the main component of this research, it has bigger benefits to justify the research question aforementioned above.
During the 2001 presidential election in Uganda, the New York Times indicated that the actions were flawed since it was characterized by intimidation, cheating, and violence (York Times, Flawed Election in Uganda, 16/03/2001). During the running of this elections, the assessment was accrued out by the leading international human rights organizations. The Human rights watch indicated that the election process in the country was affected by several cases of violence as well as arbitrary arrest which were committed by the army soldiers, the police, the intelligence service of the government, the local defense units, and the president protection unit. These were all trained and armed by the government (Human Rights Watch, 2001). Further, the report also concealed more concerns regarding the way the journalist was harassed and not allowed to report the real issues that were taking place in the country during the electioneering period. Also, there was inequality in the access to the media by different presidential candidates (Human Rights Watch, 2001). Further, there were more reported irregularities that affected the Ugandan presidential elections which started form the registration of the votes, the biased tendering process of the ballot as well as the failure by the Ugandan electoral body to address concerns over these issues (Human Rights Watch, 2001). Further, the report also criticized the nonexistence of the party government system where some people could run for the presidency on their personal merits but not specifically affiliated with to any political party. Currently, three is only one issue that has since been removed from this system of government which is “no party system” since it was introduced in 2005 referendum paving the way for a multi-party system of government (Kiranda & Kamp n.d). However, the rest of the challenges that are highlighted in the electoral process of the Uganda still hold up to date.
According to Norris (2007), the electoral authoritarianism represents one of the most common political regime in the underdeveloped countries as well as the ones that we know little about them. In the book, it put more emphasis on the way the structural study of the association between opposition parties and the rulers while struggling under the electoral authoritarianism. In this case, some challenges are faced by the opposition leaders under the leadership of the incumbency where they are not given the best platform that can allow them to participate fully and get the correct results. The incumbency, therefore, uses intimidation to oppress the efforts by the political rivals. This is through the use of excessive powers, change of the election laws, manipulation of the election results and violence. These are the things that make them not feel free for the elections hence undermining the democracy. The book, therefore, helps to advance the paradigm of comparative politics that brings back the study of various autocracies to their best place but separate from the study of the consolidated democracies.
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The required voting participation socioeconomic model that was advanced by Varbal and Nie recognizes the responsibility of the wider context of the institutions that is developed by the electoral system as well as the administrative procedures. However, this was not given much attention. In contrast, in the past decades, there is a growing comparative study that tries to explain the changes in the voter turnout and to enhance participation has offered a better ground for the significance of the institutional rules as well as the legal arrangements for voter registration which impacts benefits and costs of the electoral activism. In this case, the comparative study on voter turnout has been bolstered by the release of the database that was collected by the international IDEA voter participation globally in both the national as well as the presidential elections starting from 1945 (Pintor, Gratschew & Bittiger, 2004)). There is also a related study that was collected from the national election commissions among other recognized bodies which have established a better accurate information regarding legal and administrative procedures that are used in the monitoring of elections in various countries in the world. These procedures include the process of voter registration, the legal requirements for the voter to qualify to register and the candidate to vie for a specific position, the use of compulsory voting, public funding for parties and campaigns as well as multi-day voting (Massicotte, Blais & Yoshinaka, 2004). There is also a growing interest that has been portrayed in the impact monitoring of the new information as well as communication technologies regarding the administration, voting, and balloting, for instance, the use of the electronic voting in Estonia, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Australia (Kersting & Baldersheim, 2004)
In the United States of America, the elections frequency as well as the voter registration process that is complicated has been believed to the main cause that affects the level of voter turnout in the country. This has prompted more research in the recent days with a greater focus on the effects of the administrative reforms with regards to the electoral process. This comprises the introduction of the use of different closing dates for registration, motor vehicle voter registration, use of the election days same-day registration, and the innovation of the design of the ballot (Wolfinger & Rosenstone, 1980). The most significant reforms that are under discussion in the United States of America include the Electoral College amendments and to single-member single vote electoral system (Hill, 2002). The communed controversy in this part relates the right denominator utilized to monitor trends in the United States voter turnout. Most of the researchers have mostly relied on the on the valid votes cast as a percentage of the voting age population. For instance, according to Patterson, regardless of the fluctuations, there has been a significant elimination of the voting participation mostly in national elections for the past thirty years (Patterson, 2009). Further, McDonald and Popkin (2001) assert that any seeming removal of the voter turnout in the elections of America as well as the congressional elections at this time is as a result of increasing number of ineligible populations comprising felons and non-citizens who are not allowed by the law to cast their votes, but not necessarily the increasing number of the people who are not in good position to participate in an election. Due to this, it raises the significance of coming up with the cross-national comparisons where the number of voter turnout estimation is based on the number of the valid votes cast as a percentage of the voting age population as opposed to the eligible electorates. This is so important for the nation where there are bigger bindings of the country’s population not being included in the elections, whether as a result of limited citizenship immigrants, universal suffrage that is partial (for instance, not allowing women to participate in an election), or any other restrictions that bar the major groups in accessing their voting rights. Nonetheless, it is also good to know that the selection of the beginning and the ending points so any given analysis of time series trends are also vital. Therefore, more caution should be exercised of any comparison of the electoral turnout that begins series, haphazard, on a specific high point. For instance, the 1960 United States elections or those that fail to explain and acknowledge bigger fluctuations in the line of a trend that can be best accounted for by contextual actors which include the race perceived clones.
In the presidential and parliamentary elections that followed the enactment of the multiparty system, the human rights watch indicated, in its report, that there were incidences of ballot stuffing, voters voting more than once including those that were not eligible for voting. On the other hand, other eligible citizens were not allowed to exercise their democratic rights of voting since their names were not included in the voter register. The other report concerning this election gave a deep analysis of all the instances that took place before and after the elections where it did not just look at the usual challenges that can be witnessed in an election but also go an extra mile by addressing issues that were presented by different political parties. For instance, this report pointed on the manifestos of the opposition parties as well as the failures of NRM which is the sitting political party. Further, the report delved into issues of integrity and accountability alongside the policies of the independent parties (Gloppen et al., 2006). The opposition on their grievances attacked the president for clinging to power, failing to fight corruption and also failed to bring to end the war in the country (Wang & Rakner, 2005). However, as compared to the other elections witnessed in the country, the 2006 elections were orderly and peaceful as well as efficient ((Wang & Rakner, 2005). Consequently, the new electoral body was commended for their good work of showing some level of transparency and their willingness to incorporate various political interest. This is after they added a computerized photographic register of voters which was meant to eradicate the issue of multiple voting, stopping voting in military barracks, making it unlawful for the people to attend rallies when armed, prohibiting the civil servants from participating actively in partisan politics, coming up with the interparty committee to address election issues at both district and national levels, establishment of the complaint desks at both levels, allowing local and international observers to oversee the elections, introduction of the transparent ballot boxes which aimed at reducing the incidences of ballot stuffing, as well as establishing a working code of conduct that govern the police officers and security personnel and political parties. Even with all these strides made by the electoral commission, there were still some allegation that the electoral body did not undertake its mandate in a mandate that was seen as impartial ((Wang & Rakner, 2005).
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The political elections process also involves other actors from the media who play a significant role in educating, informing as well as entertaining members of the public on issues regarding politics ((Van Kessel, 2000). In this case, during the electioneering period, the media offers a conducive platform that allows for political discussion from various angles. This ensures that each party present their programs to the electorates, offer voter education in a manner that is perceived technically sensible as well as monitoring of the electoral conduct during campaign periods and the elections period (Van Kessel, 2000). However, some of the notable challenges that can be witnessed here are the dominance of the party in power. For instance, in the Ugandan elections that was conducted in 2006, the new visions sourced 61 percent of its news from the NRM which is the leading party, the largest opposition party FDC had 8 percent, while the daily monitor and Bukedde sourced 37%, 22% and 59%, 16% for NRM and FDC respectively (Kelley, 2012). Based on these data, the leading party of NRM had better opportunities of being seen by the electorates as compared to the FDC which is the largest opposition party in the country. Due to this disparity, the UHRC did make a recommendation in their 2011 elections that the media houses must put more efforts to enhance freedom of speech and allow equal chances for all the political parties to take part in a discussion in different media houses.
From the wider perspective regarding the election cycle in many countries; the electoral process has faced a constant criticism due to the late finalization of the election rules which worsened the situation presented by the already weak political parties. For instance, is some countries, the political leaders tend to change the elections laws and the constitution to suit their personal interest. This includes the removal of the presidential age limits, the required level of education for a candidate to be eligible for a certain elective position as well as the number of the terms that a leader can serve in a given position. Nonetheless, the political leader in power tend to enjoy magnificent power over the other opposition candidates since they are the ones controlling the country’s resources during their campaigns which is contrary to the elections laws ((Wang & Rakner, 2005). In essence, the political election candidates should use their resources during campaigns that would ensure equality and avoid misuse of the public resources for personal gains.
Based on the analysis of the literature concerning the political election issues, some common characteristics come about. These are the issues that are common among the countries that do not offer a fair ground for the political elections where the incumbency would try to oppress the opposition for them to have leverage over them during the election. These characteristics are discussed below;
Suffrage- the question is who will vote or not in a political election is one of the main issues. In essence, the electorates do not in most cases include all the population in a given country or region. For instance, the country does not allow those people that are judged with mental problems to participate in the electioneering process actively. Also, there is a minimum age that is juristically eligible to carry out an election. This means that the eligible voters have to meet certain age limit to participate in an election. In some countries, there are specific groups of people that are not allowed to vote. For instance, in Australia, the aboriginal people were not given the opportunity to cast their votes till 1962 which was also followed in 2010 with the federal government banning the prisoners from participating in an election. In this case, the larger percentage of the prisoners in the Australia is the aboriginal people.
These practices are common in many countries and are typically meant for the specific group of population in a given country even though more limits may also be imposed. Nonetheless, in the European Union, any person can take part in the municipality elections so long as that person resides in the municipality and is among the citizens of the European Union thus eliminating the requirement that the voter should be a resident of a resident country.
Further, the political elections in some countries extend suffrage to the eligible voters who deliberately fail to participate in an election process as required by the law. In this case, in the event an eligible voter does not participate in an election, the person may be subject to the punitive measures which include fines or imprisonment.
In a representative democracy, there is a need for the guidelines that help regulate the nomination process of for the political office. However, in most instances, this has not been the case since most of the nominations have been mediated through preselection process as organized by the political parties. There is also a concern over the difference between the partisan and non-partisan nominations. In the event where the open democracy takes the central stage or the specific type of the non-partisan democracy, any person who is eligible can be nominated for the political office. In as much as the elections were used in the ancient Greece and Rome, the emergence of the government of representative did not at all witness any nominations where the voters were at liberty to elect any leader they so desire during the voting day, with the minimum exceptions such as, the minimum age required to take part in an election. Under this scenario, it was not even possible for the electorate members to be familiar with all the persons that were eligible. This is even though such systems may entail elections that are indirect at wider geographical levels to make sure that there is the first-hand familiarity among all the possible candidates that can be available at all these ranks among the elected delegates.
Concerning the partisan system, in some specific countries, members of the specific political party can only be nominated. However, any other person can still be nominated through the petition hence allowing the person to be listed. In this case, the partisan systems do not favor all the population since the parties are only interested with their objectives disregarding the regional balance which could gather for all the needs of the people.
The electoral system
It refers to the detailed constitutional arrangements as well as the voting system that transform voter to the political decision. In this case, the initial step is vote tallying where different systems of counting votes are employed as well as ballot types. In the long run, the voting system will lead to obtaining the outcomes based on the tally. Many of the systems are grouped as majoritarian or proportional. Most of the countries have heightened movements that drive the electoral reforms that advocate various systems such as single transferable vote, approval voting, Condorcet method or immediate runoff voting. All these methods are gaining pace in some elections in few countries where the significant elections such as residential still do employ the traditional methods of counting votes.
In as much as accountability and openness are in most cases considered the pillars of the democratic system of election, the process of vote casting as well as the content of the vote are among the important issues that must be taken into consideration. However, the use of the secret ballot is one of the relatively latest development though it is seen as open of the important aspect regarding free and fair elections since it helps in reducing occurrences of the intimidation. This is so because people would make their choice based on their desired leaders without being known by the other person that support the opposition candidate or the same candidate that the individual has voted for.
In the recent days, the incumbent leadership has been known to influence the electoral system where it has change laws that bar the opposition leaders form inputting their efforts that help in achieving transparent elections in any country. The group has, therefore, worked to ensure that they have the upper hand over the opposition. The changing of the laws and resource allocation of the responsible parties is what affect the openness of most elections.
In essence, the nature of the democracy is that all the elected persons should be answerable to the people who elected them hence they should get back to the voters against after a specific period to seek their mandate again to allow him or her to still operate in the office. For this reason, the majority of the democratic nations provides that the political elections be held at some fixed, regular periods not unless a calamity befalls the persons in the position that would necessitate fresh elections. For instance, in the united states of America, the elections are normally carried out after every 3 and 6 years in the majority of the states except some US house of representatives whose election are called after every two years. In this case, different schedules are dependant on the country. For instance, the presidential elections in Ireland are carried out at an interval of seven years, while in France it is after every five years, while in the united states of America it is at an interval of four years.
Fixed or predetermined dates of elections have fairness advantage as well as predictability. However, the disadvantages of this are that it significantly increases the campaign periods which is not good for the economy and also makes the parliamentary system more problematic in the event the same date is not observed to ensure that there is a fresh election. This situation can occur especially in the event where there are inconveniences which could be due to the break out of the war in the country which may force the legislature to extend their tenure to allow the country settle and facilitate a free and fair election. Given this kind of scenario, it results in the constitutional crisis since where the law has stipulated that the election should be held, then the election should be held and at no point, it should not be postponed since it would create the undesirable political environment in the country. Further, in the other states such as the United Kingdom, the maximum term limit of office is set where the executive come up with the decisions within the limit at which the elections should be held. In this case, it means that the government stays in power for close to its full term not unless there is anything else special that happens within the term such as the vote of no-confidence. However, this timing of the election date relies on various factors which comprise the size of the majority as well as the performance of the opinion polls.
In the event an election is called, the political candidates and their supporters use different means to influence the policy by directly competing for the votes with the other competitors in what is termed as campaigns. In this case, the candidates sell their policies to its supporters in an attempt to outweigh the policy of the other competitor. The campaigners can either be loosely affiliated or formally affiliated and in most cases, uses the campaign advertising. In most cases, the political scientist is able to predict the outcome of the elections by using forecasting methods.
Due to the extensive competition, their candidates tend to use a different method of advertising to lure their supporters. This increases burden to the candidates where they will have to sell some of their properties to meet the campaign expenses. The cost factors during campaigns include the production of the posters, roadshows and live broadcast among other means of communication. The presidential elections are the expensive ones since the candidate has to cover a wider area to reach to more supporters, unlike the local elections.
Difficulties with elections
In most countries that have a rule of law that is weaker, the obvious reasons as to why the elections do not meet the international standards of being fair and transparent are due to the interference by the incumbent leadership. In this case, leaders who use autocratic or dictatorship style of leadership may use their powers of the executive to hold in power even if the majority of has decided that they should be out. Also, legislative members may use their numbers to pass laws that may undermine the process of elections to hinder the power balance in the body in changing to a rival party as a result of the political election.
Furthermore, the non-governmental organizations still can affect the elections by using physical force, fraud, verbal intimidation which can lead to improper vote casting or counting of the casted votes. Even with the countries that are known to have a free and fair election, there are still some efforts that are put in place to minimize and monitor frauds in the lectins. It is the frauds that in this case undermine the process of the election is fair and free to all the candidates.
There is also no debate or the informed electorates regarding the issues or the eligible candidates as a result of poor freedom of expression, press that lacks objectivity due to state control as well as poor access to the political media and news. In this case, freedom of expression can be hindered by the government which inclines to specific perspectives or state propaganda.
The application of the unfair rules in the elections which include the exclusion of the opposition candidates form vying for the elective office, restricting the kind of the person to be candidates as well as changing the electoral process are some of the ways that are employed to alter the favor of a particular candidate. These manipulations can result to series of court cases which affect the campaigning process of the candidates hence there is the likelihood of low votes during the actual elections.
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Campaign interference is yet another political election wrong that is witnessed in various presidential and local elections. Those that are holding power may assassinate or oppress the opposition candidates. In some instances, those in power can even criminalize the whole campaign process of the opposition candidate which makes it impossible for him or her to exercise its democratic right of reaching out to the voters during vote hunting mission. Harassment or beating of the campaigners can also be one of the strategies that are used by the incumbent leadership to carry out intimidation of voters using violence. In some rare scenarios, foreign interventions of elections can ensue.
Tampering with the mechanism of election which comprises misleading or confusing voters regarding the way to vote, going against the rules of the secret ballot, stuffing of ballots, damaging the voting machines, as well as destroying the important elements of the ballot papers, suppression of voter, fraudulent results tabulation ,and the use of the physical or verbal force in the polling stations, can be applied. In so doing, the will of the people may not be expressed accordingly since they do not enjoy their rights within their jurisdiction to vote for any candidate that they desire.
Therefore, with all these wrongdoings in the political elections, there is need to put in place interventions that will ensure that these wrongs do not occur in any country so as to enable people to express their will by voting in the person they desire to represent them and oust those that are not fit to hold the leadership position. This can be through providing a conducive environment where all the candidates, whether in opposition or incumbent, can campaign freely without any kind of intimidation, ensuring that the electoral system is working well, elimination of the unfair rules which affect the fairness of the election, and having an informed electoral debate where all the stakeholders are involved in finding the solutions to the issues that are likely to affect the political election in any given country.
Having described the history and the various practices involved during political elections, it is evident that there are wrongs that are committed during elections. These wrongs make the process to look unfair and not meet the accepted international standards. Some of these practices include; non-governmental organizations still can affect the elections by using physical force, fraud, verbal intimidation which can lead to improper vote casting or counting of the casted votes. There is also no debate or the informed electorates regarding the issues or the eligible candidates as a result of poor freedom of expression, press that lacks objectivity due to state control as well as poor access to the political media and news. Moreover, the application of the unfair rules in the elections which include the exclusion of the opposition candidates from vying for the elective office, restricting the kind of the person to be candidates, as well as changing the electoral process, are some of the ways that are employed to undermine the openness of the elections. Nonetheless, Campaign interference is yet another political election wrong that is witnessed in various presidential and local elections. Those that are holding power may assassinate or oppress the opposition candidates. Where in some cases, those in power can even criminalize the whole campaign process of the opposition candidate which makes it impossible for him or her to exercise its democratic right of reaching out to the voters during vote hunting mission. Finally, tampering with the mechanisms of election which entail misleading or confusing voters regarding the way to vote, going against the rules of the secret ballot, stuffing of ballots, damaging the voting machines as well as destroying the important elements of the ballot papers, suppression of voter, fraudulent results tabulation, and the use of the physical or verbal force in the polling stations are among the practices that render the political elections unfair. Nevertheless, this can be changed by providing a conducive environment where all the candidates, whether in opposition or incumbent, can campaign freely without any intimidation. Also, other changes include, ensuring that the electoral system is working well, elimination of the unfair rules which affect the fairness of the election and having an informed electoral debate where all the stakeholders are involved in finding the solutions to the issues that are likely to affect the political election in any given country. With all these in place, the political election can sanctify itself and change the perspective of many people that it brings a lot of challenges to both the opposition candidates as well as undermining the democracy of the people. Thus, it will lead to fair, transparent and credible elections in all the governments.
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