This is a guest post by Mohamed Jallow, program development specialist at IntraHealth International. He was previously a program associate at the Council on Foreign Relations.
Looking at the bitterly divisive elections campaigns in Sierra Leone, former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo’s words from the 2007 elections come to mind; winning the elections is literally “a matter of life and death.” In Sierra Leone, as is in Nigeria, the winner-takes-all-system is an integral part of politics. Widespread political patronage and the perception that those who win presidential elections provide sole, unfettered access to the lucrative benefits of political power, makes the electoral process a very dangerous undertaking. Read more »