The ‘Compendium of Elections in Southern Africa: 20 Years of Multiparty Democracy’ is a comprehensive account of the first two decades of inclusive and competitive elections in the region. Covering the period from 1989 to 2009, the book focuses on the 14 Southern African Development Community member states. Its editors hope to offer a useful resource to scholars and politics students, elections practitioners and election observers with an interest in democracy and elections in Southern Africa.
The last decade of the previous millennium and the first decade of the new millennium have been characterised by an unprecedented number of competitive multiparty elections in the Southern African region and in the rest of the African continent. This period shows that elections took root and increasingly occurred at regular intervals. In most instances electoral management increased in quality. However, behind the veil of frequency lies a reality of uneven political quality of elections. The study identifies some of the main regional trends and highlights progression and regression in the quality of elections held in the region.
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