The United States (US) elections have triggered varying reactions with some saying developing states particularly Africa should learn while some have slammed the African-like actions of the outgoing President Donald Trump.
Some say Trump and his supporters’ reaction to the loss was a replica of what African politicians. Ange Kouame, 23, a student in Ivory Coast’s main city, Abidjan said:
You would think we’re in Africa when you see Trump’s behaviour.
These remarks were echoed by Kenyan Maurice Nandasaba, who insinuated that contrary to claims that the United States is a fully established democracy, the recent election exposed authoritarian tendencies. Nandasaba told IOL:
I believe the playground response is ‘why you talking about yourself? They tell us about democracy, it’s simply a hoax. They don’t mean it.
When it became apparent that Joe Biden was winning the race, Trump and his supporters protested over vote counting saying they had observed some irregularities.
In some states, gun-wielding Trump’s supporters went to vote-counting centres where they shouted that counting of votes should’ve stopped.
Meanwhile, some say despite the “selected” incidences of said irregularities, the absence of violence throughout the election in itself is a lesson for African leaders and their followers should learn. Viviane Asseke, a schoolteacher in Ivory Coast, where more than 10 people have died in clashes since the current president won a third term that opponents consider unconstitutional said:
It’s calm, and there is no violence. It makes you want to vote.”
Often, elections in developing countries are marred by vote-buying, violence and voter intimidation that the results would not reflect the will of the people.
This has gradually demoralised the electorate since voting is now considered an ineffective way to express their choice of leaders.