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Elections, Democracy and COVID-19 in West Africa

Based on its analysis of elections conducted so far in West Africa during the current pandemic, the Centre for Democracy and Development outlines the following considerations to guide the conduct of elections under the pandemic:

Tissued by national governments, public health authorities, and national task forces on the movement and safety of people should inform the decisions taken by governments and electoral management bodies to either postpone or hold elections. Actors should prioritize conducting the full gamut of electoral activities (voter registration, procurement, political campaigning, and electoral crisis management).

Decision-makers must consider the constitutional significance of elections and the originally scheduled dates by comparing the advantages and disadvantages of holding or postponing an election during the pandemic.

This is important if the legitimacy of the elections is not to be questioned or diminished.