Election Watch

Issue Date January 2003
Volume 14
Issue 1
Page Numbers 178-82
file Print
arrow-down-thin Download from Project MUSE
external View Citation

(September-December 2002)

Bahrain: The first legislative elections since 1973 were held on October 24 and 31. No political parties are allowed, hence only independent candidates were elected. Secular candidates secured a total of 21 out of the 40 seats. Half of registered voters were women, and overall turnout was 53 percent.

Bosnia: In October 5 tri-presidential elections, the 3 seats in the collegial presidency, previously occupied by reformists, went to nationalist candidates: Sulejman Tihic of the Bosnian Muslim Party of Democratic Action (SDA), Mirko Sarovic of the Serbian Democratic Party (SDS), and Dragan Covic of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ). In concurrent elections to the 42-seat House of Representatives, the SDS won 5 of the 14 seats reserved for the Serb Republic, and the SDA won 10 of the 28 seats reserved for the Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Party for Bosnia-Herzegovina won 6 seats, HDZ won 5, and the Democratic Socialist Party won 4 seats.

Brazil: In an October 27 presidential runoff, Luis Inácio “Lula” da Silva of the Workers’ Party (PT) won 61 percent of the vote, thereby defeating José Serra of the Brazilian Social Democratic Party (PSDB). In the first round, held on October 6, Lula won 46 percent, and Serra 23 percent. In concurrent legislative elections, PT obtained 91 of 513 seats, and the Liberal Front Party (PFL), 84. The Party of the Brazilian Democratic Movement (PMDB) won 74; PSDB, 71; and the Brazilian Progressive Party, 49. The remainder was split among 14 other parties. In balloting for 54 seats in the 81-seat Senate, PFL won 14, PT won 10, PMBD won 9, and PSDB won 8.

Czech Republic: In two rounds of elections for 27 of 81 Senate seats, [End Page 178] the Civic Democratic Party won 9 seats; the Czech Social Democratic Party won 7 seats; and the Christian Democratic Union and the Freedom Union won one seat each. The remaining 9 seats were taken by independents. The turnout was 24 percent in the first round held on October 25–26, and 30 percent in the second round on November 1–2.

Ecuador: In October 20 elections for the 100-seat National Congress, the Social Christian Party won 18 percent; New Country Movement, 16 percent; New Party for National Action (PRIAN), 10 percent; Ecuadorian Rolodist Party, 10 percent; and the Popular Socialist Party/Multinational Pachakutik United Movement (SPS/MUPP-NP), 8 percent. In presidential balloting held on the same date, no candidate garnered more than 50 percent of the vote. In a runoff held on November 24, Lucio Edwin Gutierrez Borbua of the SPS/MUPP-NP won 55 percent, defeating Alvaro Noboa of the PRIAN, who won 45 percent.

Equatorial Guinea: Presidential elections were scheduled for December 15. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Jamaica: In elections to the 60-seat House of Representatives held on October 16, Prime Minister P.J. Patterson’s social-democratic People’s National Party won 35 seats, while the conservative Jamaica Labour Party won the remaining 25. Observers called the elections troubled but fair.

Kenya: Presidential and legislative elections were scheduled for December 27. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Kiribati: Legislative elections were held on November 29. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Latvia: In October 5 parliamentary elections, the New Era party gained 26 out of 100 seats, the coalition For Civil Rights in a United Latvia gained 24, and the People’s Party gained 21. A governing coalition was formed by New Era, the Union of Greens and Farmers (12 seats), the Christian Latvia First Party (10 seats), and the Fatherland and Freedom Alliance (7 seats). The new prime minister is New Era’s Einars Repse, formerly head of Latvia’s central bank.

Lithuania: Presidential elections were scheduled for December 22. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Macedonia: In September 15 general elections, the Together For Macedonia coalition—formed by social and liberal democrats and led by Branko Crvenkovski—won 60 of 120 seats. The incumbent government [End Page 179] coalition, the Alliance of Conservatives and Liberals—led by Prime Minister Ljubco Georgievski and comprised of the Internal Revolutionary Organization–Democratic Party for Macedonian Unity and the Liberal Party Alliance—won 33 seats. The Democratic Integrative Union of Radical Albanians won 16 seats, while the rival Democratic Albanian Party gained 7 seats. Finally, the Democratic Prosperity Party got 2 seats, and the National Democratic and the Socialist parties got one seat each.

Madagascar: Parliamentary elections were scheduled for December 15. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Montenegro: In October 20 general elections, President Milo Djukanovic’s Democratic List for a European Montenegro—made up of the Democratic Party of Socialists, the Social Democratic Party, Popular Harmony, and the Civic Party—won 48 percent of the votes cast. The coalition Together for Change, led by Pedrag Bulatovic of the Popular Socialist Party, obtained 38 percent. (For more information on these elections, see pp. 146–54.) Presidential elections were scheduled for December 22. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Morocco: In September 27 parliamentary elections, the Socialist Union of Popular Forces of Prime Minister Abderrahmane Youssoufi remained the largest party with 50 out of 325 seats, followed by the Independence Party with 48. The coalition between Popular Constitutional and Democratic Movement and the Islamist Justice and Development Party won 42 seats, the conservative National Assembly of Independents won 41, and the conservative Popular Movement won 27. The remaining seats were split among 18 other parties.

Pakistan: Parliamentary elections were held on October 10 for the first time since General Pervez Musharraf’s 1999 army coup. The Pakistan Muslim League (Quaid-e-Azam) won 77 out of 272 contested seats in the National Assembly, the Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarians won 60, and the Islamist Muttahhida Majlis-e-Amal Pakistan won 45. The Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) gained 14 seats. The remainder was split among smaller parties and independent candidates. In addition, 60 seats were reserved for women, and 10 for ethnic and religious minorities. International observers considered the balloting transparent, but criticized the government for manipulating electoral laws during the campaign period.

Serbia: In the first round of presidential elections held on September 29, Yugoslav president Vojislav Kostunica of the Democratic Party of Serbia won 30 percent of the votes, independent Mirolujub Labus won 27 percent, [End Page 180] and Vojislav Se¡selj of the Serbian Radical Party won 23 percent. In an October 13 second round, Kostunica won 68 percent and Labus 32 percent. This round was, however, invalidated in accordance with Serbian electoral law, because voter turnout was less than 50 percent. In a December 8 third round, which was also invalidated due to low turnout, Kostunica won 58 percent, and Se¡selj won 37 percent. At the time of this writing, it was unclear when or if a new election would be held.

Seychelles: In parliamentary elections held on December 4–6, the Seychelles People’s Progressive Front won 23 of 34 seats, and the remaining 11 seats went to the Seychelles National Party.

Slovakia: In September 20–21 parliamentary elections, Vladimir Meèiar’s populist Movement for a Democratic Slovakia retained the plurality with 36 of 150 seats but could not form a government. A government was instead formed by a center-right coalition, led by Prime Minister Mikulás Dzurinda’s Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (28 seats), joined by the Party of the Hungarian Coalition (20 seats), the Christian Democratic Movement (15 seats), and the Alliance of New Citizens (15 seats). The Direction Party took 25 seats, and the Communist Party of Slovakia, 11.

Slovenia: In second-round presidential elections held on December 1, incumbent Prime Minister Janez Drnovsek of the Liberal Democracy of Slovenia won 57 percent, defeating independent candidate Barbara Brezigar, who won 43 percent. In the first round, held on November 10, Drnovsek took 44 percent and Brezigar 31 percent.

South Korea: Presidential elections were scheduled for December 19. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Togo: Parliamentary elections were held on October 27. Results will be reported in a future issue.

Trinidad and Tobago: Incumbent prime minister Patrick Manning’s People’s National Movement won 20 of 36 seats in parliamentary elections held on October 7. The social-democratic United National Congress won the remaining 16 seats.

Turkey: In November 3 elections to the 550-member Grand National Assembly, only two parties managed to exceed the 10 percent necessary for entry to parliament. The Justice and Development party—which was created a year ago based on what remained of the prohibited Islamist Welfare Party—gained 34 percent of the vote and 363 seats, while the Republican People’s Party won 19 percent and 178 seats. [End Page 181]

(January-December 2003)

Argentina: legislative, 30 March 2003; presidential, October 2003

Armenia: presidential, 19 February 2003; parliamentary, 25 May 2003

Azerbaijan: presidential, October 2003

Belize: parliamentary, August 2003

Benin: legislative, March 2003

Cambodia: parliamentary, 27 July 2003

Dominica: presidential, October 2003

El Salvador: legislative, March 2003

Estonia: parliamentary, March 2003

Guatemala: presidential/legislative, November 2003

Guinea: presidential, December 2003

Latvia: presidential, June 2003

Liberia: presidential, July 2003

Maldives: presidential, October 2003

Malta: parliamentary, September 2003

Marshall Islands: legislative, November 2003

Mauritania: presidential, December 2003

Micronesia: legislative, 4 March 2003; presidential, May 2003

Mongolia: parliamentary, January 2003

Nigeria: presidential, April 2003

Palestinian Authority: presidential/legislative, 20 January 2003

Paraguay: presidential/legislative, 27 April 2003

Russia: parliamentary, 21 December 2003

Yemen: parliamentary, 27 April 2003

Election Watch provides reports of recently decided and upcoming elections in developing nations and the postcommunist world. Elections in nondemocratic nations are included when they exhibit a significant element of genuine competition or, in the case of upcoming elections, when they represent an important test of progress toward democracy. Much of the data for Election Watch is provided by the International Foundation for Election Systems (IFES), a private, nonprofit education and research foundation that assists in monitoring, supporting, and strengthening the mechanics of the electoral process worldwide. For additional information, contact: IFES, 1101 15th Street, N.W., Suite 300, Washington, DC 20005; (202) 828-8507; www.ifes.org.