The Federal Republic of Nigeria held its latest quadrennial presidential election. Most polls showed the challenger, Muhammadu Buhari, ahead of incumbent Goodluck Jonathan. None of the polls, however, were believable in terms of sampling method, age, and weighting. But, broken clocks and poor polls can be right once in a while. Buhari won and Jonathan willingly stepped down. This is the biggest step a State can make on its way to full democracy.
What can we learn about the election?
The Federal Republic of Nigeria has seen its share of political instability since its 1960 independence. It has seen a civil war in the south and a strong terrorist insurgency in the north. It has seen military coups d'état. Through it all, Nigeria has moved, in fits and starts, towards democracy. Saturday marks another step in that journey.
What are the predictions for the upcoming presidential elections?
The Kingdom of Cambodia, also known as Kampuchea, has spent the last few decades recovering from the Khmer Rouge and the resulting Vietnamese invasion. In 1993, Norodom Sihanouk was restored to the throne, and the long, slow process of democratization began. While elections take place at regular intervals, Cambodia is a one-party dominant state.
The parliament recently passed laws to protect the democratic process. What may be some consequences of those laws?
Pakistan is the sixth most populous country in the world. It is primarily located between India and Afghanistan, although it shares a desert border with Iran and a mountainous border with China. As a former British colony, one would expect its government style to be based on the Westminster model. However, Pakistan is a federal parliamentary republic with a president.
The ruling party won 18 of the 48 seats in the Senate in Friday's election. What does this mean for Pakistan?
The recent violent protests have finally drawn a reaction from the Thai military. Using a 1914 law, the Thai military imposed martial law in an attempt to “preserve order and bring back peacefulness.” Immediate feedback suggests that this will not deter the anti-government protesters.
If not this, then what?