THE VICTIMS OF THE BALLOT PAPER

2016-01-09 06:24

It was not long ago when some of us were refused a right to vote; in our brief history of just a few centuries, the centre of conflict in this country and other countries has been the struggle for the right to vote. The right to vote is one of the most vital rights of an individual that constitutes the basic principle of equality in our democracy. As far as democracy is concerned, free and fair elections is the definite image of an equal society. The South African constitution says elections must be based on the system of proportional representation, and elections in South Africa are conducted by the 'Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa', an independent body established by the constitution of the Republic of South Africa. Ensuring that all the elections are conducted free and fair.

Despite the firm reasoning of our constitution and the watchful lens of the independent bodies, African countries are still immensely embedded with the tricks of unfair elections. Scandalous missions of bribery for a certain person to win the elections. The made up votes. Frequent discoveries of loads of boxes with uncounted ballot papers, being thrown on the dumping site, or worse: being burnt. Such news are not foreign to us. What is the response of our constitutions to those who wrongfully go against them, in making sure that immorality has no place in our democratic societies? The sad part is when other people must lose their lives for voting for such and such oppositions: being threatened by the loyalists of such and such a party. There is a need for an implementation of electronic device to replace the ballot paper, as a technological alternative method of voting. This electronic device can work by permitting an individual to vote by accessing their fingerprints. This is a possible solution of avoiding all these unfair tragic scandals. With the fact that we don't vote everyday, in that regards, there is no way our countries wouldn't afford this advancement.

There is nothing more dangerous than a system, because, a system doesn't have a mind of its own; behind every system there is a mind of a human being. Human beings who influences the system to their benefit and advantage. What's worth staying truthful to our constitutions without neglecting our morals and ethics? In most cases, the unfair elections results to dictatorship. Especially in our African countries where leaders expect to die in power, knowing very well that, they were not born in power. In their refusal to step down from power, when their term has expired is a tragic piece; ordinary citizens suffer terribly, while other individuals are being tortured to death. This despotic power becomes dangerous when it is unconscious of itself. As keenly observed by Xolela Mangcu that, "Power is conscious of itself but power is most dangerous when it is unconscious of its actions or when its actions take on a certain automacity."

In a logical reasoning of technological evolution in African countries, we need to utilize the practical strength of technology, in elevating and protecting the standard of our democratic image. Africa must spit out all greedy sentiments that ruin its reputation. I myself voted in the previous national elections, there is something special about voting, its the feeling of belonging that makes you a true citizen. However, this feeling becomes violated when you are aware of the cruelty and unfairness performed in the fulfillment of the elections. We have reached the point of no longer talking about the permanence of the ballot paper, based on our experiences of practicing voting in our democratic countries. Experiences that plainly describes the opportunistic barbarity of attaining power. Power which, its strength will be attended by the misapplication of its purpose by the leaders. When we look back where we came from, this was not part of our democratic agenda we wanted to pursue. Africa and African people deserve better.

The use of the electronic device would be the beginning of African self empowered development; which proves the capability of implementing African solutions to African problems, as a way forward in the improvement of African development. That would ensure free and fair elections without fear or favour, monitored by an independent body established by the constitution. The achievement of the ambitions that aimed at developing our countries would be possible, and throughout the space of time, Africa will stand collected and united in the eye of morality. One of the most essence of citizenship is the right to vote, lets embrace it morally.

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