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African leaders should embrace democracy

08 November 2012, 12:21 Paul Orodi

A close contest it has been, and the incumbent has emerged victorious despite the strong fights put up by the republicans.

At exactly 11:30pm east coast time on Tuesday, history was made in America as Barack Obama became the first black person to win a second term in office as president.

It was all pomp and jubilation as democrats converged to the streets, party halls and the ‘Obama dome’ to celebrate his re-election to presidency for a second and last official term.

In Chicago, his home state, democrats could not hide their joy as the Electoral College votes kept streaming in in favor of the incumbent.

At first Romney seemed to be bagging the votes; he led by just about 20 to 40 votes but then Obama’s resurgence was too powerful for the republicans to subdue.

Well, 2012 US election has shown what true democracy is and how candidates should contest.

Africa, however, has a reputation of fighting during poll time, causing havoc where there ought to be none.

African leaders should be capable of receiving congratulatory messages upon election into office, as did Obama.

These polls should teach African leaders on the importance of peaceful elections.

The manner in which the US voted was also a blissful event. Polling stations started receiving electorates as soon as they opened, and there was order and peace thus allowing everyone to cast their votes in an atmosphere that allows calm.

The environment in which the Americans were voting gave the voters the chance to make informed decisions.

Coming closer home, chaos is always started somewhere by somebody or some people whose aim is to cause havoc and distort the peace in an effort to escape defeat.

This immaturity by African candidates shows the need to borrow a leaf from the great 50 states of America.

After all the bickering and counting of votes and tight battles, a phone call was made and the two candidates made an agreement; one congratulated the other as the other consoled his friend.

It was a call that had to be made in order to show sign of sportsmanship and heroism.

If only Africa can adopt the same culture where the looser calls the winner to concede defeat and the winner accepts the courteous call by consoling their competitor, this could mark a great leap from tyranny and dictatorship to morally upright democracy.

All in all let’s savor the moment as the son of K’ogelo is crowned president for another four year term in White House.

Obama has done himself, his country, his family, his friends and foes proud.

As Africans, we should follow suit and practice democracy.

Congratulations Barrack and your entire family; the first lady, Michelle, your daughters, Malia and Sasha and your extended family all over the world.

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