2014: Year of Global Elections

2014 is the year of global elections


 2014 is undoubtedly the global elections year. The outcome of these elections will shape the American foreign policy vis-a-vis the world.

The year will open with referendum in Egypt. Egyptians are to vote of a proposed draft constitution. This new draft constitution will replace the constitution set in place by ex-President Mohammad Morsi. He has been ousted from power by the military and his party the Muslim Brotherhood has been declared a terrorist organization. This new draft constitution will basically decide the way future presidential and parliamentary elections will be held in Egypt.

Thailand will have general elections on Feb., 2, 2014. These snap elections have been called by the Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatara amidst anti-government protests. The opposition, though, does not seem interested in elections. This is so because the outcome of these elections is very obvious. Shinawatra with her overwhelming support in the rural areas will once again come to power. In order to stop this from happening, the opposition wants a non-elected government composed of technocrats to run Thailand.

The most important month in 2014 as far as global elections are concerned is April. South Africa, India, Iraq, Hungary and Afghanistan are the countries where elections are scheduled to be held during April.

ANC in South Africa will face its toughest challenge in general elections 2014, after remaining in power for two decades. The political analysts are of the view that ANC will lose ground to the opposition Democratic Alliance and the populist Economic Freedom Fighters.  Most political commentators believe, that ANC will face a tough time in these elections because of the charges of wide-spread corruption against its government. Another factor that is to effect ANC’s performance is the death of Nelson Mandela. It is held by the majority of political pundits that the 1994 post apartheid  generation will play a significant part in these elections.

The 2014 general elections in India are also to be a tough fight between Congress and the BJP. Both these parties have taken turns in power since Independence. This time round, though, the AAP led by Arvind Kejriwal, may spoil their party, if it is able to deliver in the state of Delhi. One thing is certain that these elections will lead to a hung parliament in India, adding to the economic woes of the common man.

The presidential elections in Afghanistan are also to be held in April 2014. Hamid Karzai is ineligible to take part in these elections. The main political figures that are taking part in these elections are, former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah, Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai and Zalmai Rasool. The chances are, though, that the elder brother of Karzai, Qayum Karzai will, with the help of his brother, win these presidential polls.

Hungary also has parliamentary elections in April 2014. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, U.S. helped Hungary to turn it into a modern capitalist economy but many political commentators fear that it is sliding back to its old communist ways. This is so because the Fidesz Party of the current prime minister Vicktor Orban, once a symbol of change is now the regime that needs to be changed.

Other countries that are having elections in 2014 are Iraq, parliamentary elections in April; Turkey, first direct presidential elections in August; Colombia, presidential elections in August; and Scotland, referendum in September. 2014 is really a global elections year.

By Iftikhar Tariq Khanzada

Colombia Politics

Al Jazeera




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