Danielle Resnick

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Protesters attend a rally backing the Senegalese opposition in Dakar, on June 8. SEYLLOU/AFP via Getty Images

On June 23, residents across multiple Senegalese cities endured a cacophony of banging pots, honking horns, and shrill whistles. The noise signified widespread anger about the disqualification of key opposition leaders, such as Ousmane Sonko and Barthélémy Dias, from contesting the July 31 legislative elections.

By removing the threat posed by Sonko and Dias, Senegalese President Macky Sall has a greater chance of maintaining a legislative majority under his Benno Bokk Yakaar (“United in Hope” or BBY) ruling coalition, which currently holds 75 percent of the seats in the National Assembly. In turn, a legislative majority would embolden Sall to pursue a controversial third term in the 2024 presidential contests.…  Seguir leyendo »

On Thursday, Zambia voters will decide whether to reelect President Edgar Lungu of the Patriotic Front (PF) to a third term, after an earlier ruling by the country’s top court that his bid wasn’t a breach of the two-term limit. But critics also accuse Lungu of manipulating the electoral register to disenfranchise voters in regions that support his main opponent, Hakainde Hichilema of the United Party for National Development (UPND).

Zambia watchers note these election irregularities and other concerns, many of which are symptomatic of longer-term patterns. Here’s what you need to know about this week’s elections in Zambia.

In 1991, the peaceful handover of power in Zambia signified one of the most enduring legacies of the 30-year presidency of Kenneth Kaunda, who died this year.…  Seguir leyendo »