Djibouti: Ministere de l’Interieur – Communique (14.03.2023)
Djibouti: Front for the Restoration of Unity and Democracy/Front pour la Restauration de l’Unite et la Democratie (FRUD) – Communique de Presse (06.03.2023)
Djibouti: Parti National Démocratique (PND) – Communique de Presse (07.03.2023)
Djibouti: An election falling in the shadow of the Nigerian one
I am sure the rulers and the 2 decades long regime of Djibouti was happy that all eyes are on Nigeria. As the West African Nation are toiled in questions and legitimacy of the recently held General Elections. While in Djibouti it was a two party affair and a genuine opposition boycott of the Parliamentary Elections.
The Parliamentary Elections went like clock-work and the ruling party got a massive majority. They won a total of 58 of 65 seats. While the “opposition” got 7 seats. Meaning the power is all vested in the party of the President and his allies. There is no say or deeper understanding of things. The iron grip of the legislature and the executive is all in the hands of the President that has resided in the office for 23 years. That man being Ismaïl Omar Guelleh and his party the Union pour la Majorité Présidentielle (UMP).
This election was as believable as the 2021 Presidential Election. It is just a sham and a facade. The UMP was destined to “win” and nothing else. That’s why there is no hope or any sort of fanfare. It is like watching re-runs on Cable-TV. You have seen it before, but the commercials might have changed with the season. The faces of the UMP might have changed and the narratives too, but we all knew the result at the end of it. We know that Ross would say: “we were on a break” and Rachel would call him a “cheater”. That is common knowledge and just like that… the Djibouti election would go in favour of the President. It was just meant to be.
No magic, no questions and no fuzz. Just scheduled programming. Nothing interesting. No bother and no surprises. Even the real opposition didn’t show up, because they knew the gig. They have seen the ruler, the Presidency and the law enforcement. All of them know how this would play out and if they tried… they would suffer and gain no grounds doing so.
The funniest part was the IGAD Preliminary Statement recommendations, just read it here:
“1. In Djibouti, as is in any other Muslim nation, Friday is largely observed as a day of prayer as well as the first day of the weekend. It is our observation that given that the election day fell on a Friday, it affected voter turnout adversely. It is the Mission’s suggestion to the Government
of Djibouti to consider a different day for holding elections in future.
2. The participation of the youth both in the management of election and actual voting was not adequate enough, especially considering that this group contributes over half of the population. The IGAD-EOM recommends the need to put in place frameworks to encourage the youth
to take an active role in strengthening democracy in the Republic of Djibouti” (PRELIMINARY STATEMENT OF THE IGAD ELECTION OBSERVATION MISSION TO
THE LEGISLATIVE ELECTION OF DJIBOUTI, 26.02.2023).
It is like IGAD has overlooked the reasons for the boycott, the IGAD EOM doesn’t mention the grievances and why there is no “real opposition” to the regime on the ballots. That’s why the recommendations of another day than Friday and getting Youth participation is interesting. Because, the reasons for little turnout or considering to participate is that there is no stakes. The people know the game and it’s rigged. The rulers has already decided and the polls are symbolic at best.
Why should anyone really care? When there is no incentive or reasons to care… The President has already secured the mandate and the day is just procedural at the current time. His just getting his men or representatives in office and can call it a night. This could happen on any day of the week and I can assure the turnout would be low. Because, why should anyone bother? Why stay in line, if the results are pre-set and pre-fixed? Why?
That’s why these elections are happening without much concern or heartache either. Most people just see it for what it is or it isn’t interesting at all. It is just a way of trying to make things legit, but you cannot change the spots on a leopard. You can try, but you might just die while you at it.
It is a reason why Lagos and Abuja is catching all the attention. The election there has the tension, the power and the touch of some sense of “normalcy”. Parties can loose power and be swayed by public opinion. In Djibouti is neither and the President already decided. That’s why this election become a silent one. Even though its important for Djibouti. Other might let it be in the shadow and not even talk of it at all. Peace.
Djibouti: RADDE – Communique de Presse – Le RADDE salue le peuple djiboutien pour son rejet massif de la enieme mascarade electorale (25.02.2023)