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Recent election stories around the world

  • Saudi Arabia will allow women to vote and run in the next municipal elections.  They are sham elections, and no word yet if women will be able to drive to the polls, but…baby steps.
  • Zambia averted a potentially horrible outcome in its presidential election when it looked liked post-election violence would escalate.  The violence was a result of a slow counting process, which demonstrates how important effective election management can be in preventing conflict. Luckly the worst was avoided when President Rupiah Banda conceded to challenger Micheal Sata. The election was a rematch of the 2008 presidential poll. In that race,  Banda narrowly defeated Sata by a margin of 40 to 38 percent.
  • Russia will have elections next year but…
  • Bahrain held the first round of legislative elections to fill the 18 seats that were vacated by the Shia Wefaq Party.  Turnout was, not surprisingly, very low.
  • Norwegians went to the polls last Monday to vote for county and municipal councils. This was the first election in Norway since the July 22 terrorist attack that killed 77 people. During the election, voters in ten pilot municipalities had the option of voting via the internet.
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