Invitation to an International Conference on South Africa’s National and Provincial Elections

 

 

SARChI Chair, Dullah Omar Institute, and

Department of Political Studies, UWC

invite you to

International Conference: 25 April 2019

National and Provincial Elections: 8 May 2019: Key questions: Populism, provincialism, womxn, election credibility

The national and provincial elections of 8 May 2019 are regarded by many as the most important since the first democratic elections of 1994. Four key questions are addressed by four panels of experts.

The politics of populism: How does South Africa fare?

Do provincial politics matter?  

How does the womxn’s agenda fare in the elections?

E-rigged elections: election credibility?

 

Speakers include:

 

Ralph Mathekga, Senior Researcher, Centre for Humanities Research (CHR), UWC

Professor Cherrel Africa, Department of Political Studies, UWC

Rev Courtney Sampson, Provincial Electoral Officer, IEC, Western Cape

Ebrahim Fakir, Director of Programmes at Auwal Socio-Economic Research Institute (ASRI)

 

DATE: Thursday, 25 April 2019

TIME: 10h00 - 16h00

VENUE:  School of Public Health, Room 1C&D, University of the Western Cape

Please RSVP to Mandy Cupido at mccupido@uwc.ac.za (by 22 April 2019)

 

Programme

TIME

TOPIC

10:00 - 11:15

A. The politics of populism: How does South Africa fare?

In recent years the ‘politics of populism’ have been a characteristic of elections the world over, including Europe and the United States. What is the meaning of populism and is it a feature in this year’s election?


  1. International perspectives: Populism in Europe and elsewhere: a new world-wide trend? – Professor Xavier Philippe, University of Paris I (Panthéon-Sorbonne)
  2. Reflections on South Africa – Ralph Mathekga, Senior Researcher, Centre for Humanities Research (CHR), UWC

11:15 - 12:30

  • Do provincial politics matter?  

On the same day elections are held for members of the National Assembly and each of the nine provincial legislatures. This year the political landscape is more fluid than ever before, and the provincial dimension may come strongly to the fore in Gauteng and the Western Cape. Are there any material difference between the two elections? Do provincial politics matter or are provincial elections merely proxies of the national vote?

  1. All politics are local, or are they? Is there a provincial dynamic emergent in South Africa’s national election? - Ebrahim Fakir,  Director of Programmes at Auwal Socio-Economic Research Institute (ASRI)
  2. Trends and Dynamics in the Western Cape - Professor Cherrel Africa, Department of Political Studies, UWC

12:30 - 13:15

Lunch

13:15 - 14:30

C. How does the womxn’s agenda fare in the elections?

Given the current status of womxn in relation to various human rights obligations, to what extent have political parties responded to this reality and policy environment? What is the nature of women, gender and power in terms of intra-party politics, given the role it plays in the process of political party priority setting?


Looking at these issues from outside political parties, how have young womxn and feminists been organising and mobilising in the past few years and in this moment? What is the possible impact that this is having on political parties? Is this is translating into new political responses that have the potential to impact on the status of womxn?


  1. The politics of the ‘womxn and gender’ agenda inside political parties -  Samantha Waterhouse and Motlatsi  Komote, Women and Democracy Initiative, Dullah Omar Institute, UWC

 

  1. The politics of the feminist agenda from outside political parties: - TBC

14:30 - 16:00

  • E-rigged elections: election credibility?

In recent elections in Africa the credibility of electoral outcomes has seriously been undermined by the manipulation of IT systems which have become the backbone for counting votes. In Kenya the 2017 presidential election was set aside because of the manipulation of the IT system. The outcome of the 2018 Zimbabwean presidential was also challenged, unsuccessfully, on the same ground. Is the South African electoral system also subject to possible IT manipulation? Will the election results be credible?

  1. International perspectives: Is an electronic voting process a good thing? Professor Henk Kummeling, former Chairperson of the Netherlands Electoral Commission, and Rector Magnificus, Utrecht University  
  2. Uses and Misuses of e-elections:

Kenya: Henry Omboto, Dullah Omar Institute, UWC

Zimbabwe: Dr Tinashe Chigwata, Dullah Omar Institute, UWC

  1. Why trust the IEC: Rev Courtney Sampson, Provincial Electoral Officer, IEC, Western Cape 

 

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