Source: Snakes & Leaders – Africa’s political succession. Marshall van Valen/ The African Report
Democracy and development of a nation go hand in hand. Furthermore, change is part of life and nature. Political change in any country should not normally come about violently. Unfortunately for Africa, rare have been situations where new governments have emerged from democratic processes allowing citizens to choose their leaders. Instead, military coups, wars of “liberation” and or electoral violence have been some of the methods used.
Today Africa has twelve countries: Togo, Sudan, Burundi, Uganda, Chad, Congo Brazzaville, Gambia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Rwanda, Djibouti, and Angola, which will be going into presidential elections from now on until 2017. What the leaders of these countries have in common is that they will have already served two terms or more and will be seeking to extend their stay in office.
After the forced resignation of the Burkinabe president Blaise Compaore on October 31st 2014 following people’s uprising in Ouagadougou streets, a number of other African leaders who were planning to amend their constitutions to stay in power had to review their tactics and strategies. This was the case of Yeyi in Benin and Kabila in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Others like the Rwandan president Paul Kagame, have gone back to the drawing board to reassess their next move after the expiry of their authorized time in office.
People get leaders they deserve. If Africans want better leaders who abide by the law and serve citizens’ interests rather theirs, they can have them. It depends on how badly they want to have such leaders. The idea of an African Coalition Against Third Terms [ACATT] is initiated to work out how Africans can think and work together to end the detrimental overstay of political leaders who abuse their office and jeopardize citizens’ prosperity by their selfishness. New technology and available space of expression of the African diaspora could and must play a significant role in such effort.
The aim of ACATT is to end presidential third terms in AFRICA and limit to 10 years the maximum time one person can spend as president of an African country in their lifetime.
ACATT’s objectives are:
- To identify, monitor and regularly update the list of African countries where the concept of only two presidential terms has not yet become the norm in changing governments
- To identify and mobilise concerned actors inside and outside those countries for specific actions of raising awareness on the necessity of democratic change
- To consult existing actors and agree on best strategies to speed up the acceptance of a two term presidency as the standard norm to follow for political change
- To organise public events [workshops, conferences, manifestations, etc] on the subject of interest and disseminate information using effective channels of communication
- To better organize political opposition and civil society both on the continent and in the diaspora of concerned countries in order to take advantage of information technology and the impact of social media
- To develop organisational structures for a sustainable concept necessary for an harmonious development of Africa
If you are an individual or part of an organisation keen to positive change in Africa, that could provide resources to take this idea to the next step, please get in touch. We will discuss together:
- Who could be the effective actors and beneficiaries of such concept,
- What could be the tangible short and long terms results and outcomes
- The format of a realistic action plan for implementation of a thoroughly thought through programme
- The financial and human resources required for the programme
Organising for Africa