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WEBINAR: West Africa: Is Democracy in Retreat?

According to the Freedom House ‘Freedom in the World Report 2021’, of the 12 countries with the most significant decline in democracy year-on-year, five were in West Africa. The Economist Intelligence Unit’s latest Democracy Index (2020) showed that only Ghana and Cabo Verde still qualify as fully-fledged democracies in the region. 

Of the 12 countries with the most significant decline in democracy year-on-year, five were in West Africa.

A voter gets accredited during the Edo Governorship Election in Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria, on September 19, 2020. By Oluwafemi Dawodu – Shutterstock

Reports of widespread electoral irregularities, the arrest of pro-democracy activists and journalists, and the killing of peaceful protesters in demonstrations over the last three years in West Africa are grounds for concern. There is a growing distrust in the independence, neutrality and impartiality of election management bodies. The Kofi Annan Foundation seeks to work with States in the region to halt this trend – which could potentially lead to a return to instability and violence – and reaffirm their commitment to democracy and elections with integrity. 

Our upcoming webinar on democratic trends in West Africa is a first step in putting this issue of concern on the public agenda. 

Join us Wednesday, May 19, 2021, from 16h to 17h30 CET for the next in our #KAFDialogues series, ‘West Africa: Is Democracy in Retreat?’ Mohamed Ibn Chambas, outgoing Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General and Head of the UN Office for West Africa and the Sahelwill provide opening remarks.

Kofi Annan Foundation’s Special Advisor for Africa, Arnauld Akodjenou, will moderate a panel featuring experts including Christopher Fomunyoh, Director and Senior Associate, Central and West Africa at the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, Idayat Hassan, West Africa Director of the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD) –  the region’s leading democracy-focused think-tank, and Ayisha Osori, Executive Director for the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA).

 

More information:

Register here

Date: Wednesday, 19 May 2021

Time: 16:00 – 17:30 CEST

Moderated by: Arnauld AkodjenouSpecial Advisor for Africa, Kofi Annan Foundation

Panel/Speakers:

  • Mohamed Ibn Chambas, outgoing Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS),
  • Christopher  Fomunyoh, Director and Senior Associate, Central and West Africa, National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI),
  • Idayat Hassan, Director of the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD),
  • Ayisha Osori, Executive Director for the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA).
Find out more about the Kofi Annan Foundation and our Commission on Elections and Democracy in the Digital Age.

KAF Dialogues previous sessions