The Africa Governance Monitoring and Advocacy Project (AfriMAP) and OSISA will launch a major new report in Lusaka on August 27th entitled ‘Zambia – Democracy and Political Participation’.

Malawians will be electing a president, law makers and local government leaders on May 20th.  This is the fifth election since the country returned to plural politics in 1994.  One would wonder why it is important for the Open Society Foundations to be concerned about the integrity of elections in Malawi given its minimal geo-political significance compared to countries such as Nigeria, DRC, South Africa, Egypt, etc.  Yet Malawians deserve no less an opportunity to exert popular control on national decision making by exercising real choice to elect their representatives.

It is therefore quite telling that women, globally and in Africa in particular, continue to be marginalised through historical and contemporary spatial organisation that create access barriers to public space. This “spatial marginalisation” has a negative impact on not only their political and social expression, but also, as I will argue in this paper, their ability to generate livelihoods in an urban context. 

Zambia: Democracy and Political Participation provides a comprehensive review of the state of democracy and popular participation in government and public affairs in Zambia. The author, Neo Simutanyi, argues that despite the fact that Zambia has experienced unprecedented political developments – the country held six general elections, including a presidential by-election, with four peaceful presidential successions during this period – challenges remain.

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