Over the past few days, democracy’s soft belly was exposed more than ever. Who would have predicted five or 10 years ago that the land of the free, the chief priest of democracy, America, would have similar electoral challenges like an average African country?
In Kenya, the humour has reached a crescendo. Photoshoped images of President Donald Trump being sworn in by Dr Miguna Miguna and Mr James Orengo akin to the time the former premier Raila Odinga opted for alternative swearing in ceremony after disputing the election of president Uhuru Kenyatta, are doing rounds on social media! Kenyans are even offering the services of the Chief Justice David Maraga to help Trump in his quest to cancel the disputed election.
Amid all this, what is emerging is sheer hypocrisy of Western media.
When an African presidential candidate opts to sue what they believe is a rigged election, Western governments and media side with those who claim malpractices. Pressure is put on the government. In some cases, the contestants are forced to form government of “national unity.”
The USA elections coincided with that of Tanzania where the incumbent president John Magufuli won with a landslide both in presidential and parliamentary vote. And true to custom, we had outcry of rigging from the Opposition who were literary wiped out.
The US Embassy in Tanzania issued a statement saying there “were credible allegations of significant election-related fraud and intimidation.”
The US thus accepted the allegations of the opposition, which claimed the entire election was a “travesty” and should not be recognised.
Then on November 6, there was an press statement by a Trump supporter, claiming Biden could as well have voted 50 times! Isn’t this familiar to African election? Giuliani vowed to fight the results every inch of the way as he asked, “Do you think we are fools?”