Dorina Bekoe and Stephanie Burchard of the U.S. Institute for Defense Analyses have published in African Affairs an interesting write up of their study of secret mediation processes as an additional tool, along with more conventional election support measures, to seek to prevent election violence in Ghana in the 2016 election.
Well worth your time with lots to think about regarding the interplay of violence prevention, election and other democracy assistance and the other diplomatic and outside involvement with election contests.
The study finds formal secret mediation between the competing camps to have been an important part of a robust and relatively successful violence prevention program.
Dr. Stephanie Burchard has a piece in the current issue of the Institute for Defense Analyses’ Africa Watch entitled “After The Dust Has Settled: Kenya’s 2013 Elections”, noting the unexplained failure of the IEBC to release election results that were required in mid-March until mid-July. The key takeaway:
Unfortunately, after all that has happened since, it is unclear how much respect or trust Kenyans continue to have in their political institutions. Politicians seem wary of Kenya’s political institutions. Raila Odinga promised that he and CORD would boycott future elections until changes within the IEBC take place. Even more troubling, public trust in Kenya’s new institutions appears to be eroding. In early July a national survey conducted by Ipsos Synovate revealed that confidence in Kenya’s new political institutions, including the Supreme Court and the electoral commission, had fallen precipitously over the course of the past few months. In particular, confidence in the IEBC had fallen by 30 percentage points–from a high of 62 percent in February to 32 percent less than five months later.
Bonus reading on the American foreign assistance political and policy process: from the Lugar Center, “Lessons for the Next QDDR” by Diana Ohlbaum and Connie Veillette.