ETG: Ethiopia: Re-tooling the 2010 election as a weapon of democracy

Whatever one’s position on the 2010 general election, a number of things are certain. First, the election will take place. Second, the democratic forces are fragmented and at loggerheads with each other, but almost all of them—those who signed the Code of Conduct and those who did not — are participating in the election. Third, the history of the TPLF/EPRDF makes it certain that it will use fraud, intimidation, arrest, imprisonment, and violence to win the elections.A cursory examination of the current debate on the 2010 election shows a wide and contradictory range of views. Not surprisingly, those who support the TPLF/EPRDF assert that the 2010 election is as democratic as they come and accuse its detractors of all the political ills one could imagine. Those who support the parties that signed the Code of Conduct seem to have divergent but overlapping answers. Some seem to imply that democracy will emerge only if they work within the system. Others seem to believe, rather faintly, that the democratic victory of 2005, crushed by the TPLF/EPRDF, could be re-enacted. Still others argue that even if it is certain that the TPLF/EPDRF will win the election, the electoral exercise will have pedagogical benefits for the democratic struggle against the current authoritarian regime. Finally, those who are opposed to the signing of the Code of Conduct consider the 2010 election a sham. For the latter, participating in the election will do nothing else but misleadingly legitimize the TPLF/EPDRF dictatorship as a democratic regime. ETG: Ethiopia: Re-tooling the 2010 election as a weapon of democracy -Read more –

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