International Journal of Political Science and Development

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 International Journal of Political Science and Development

Vol. 1(3), pp. 105116, November 2013

DOI: 10.14662/IJPSD2013.009

ISSN: 2360-784X


Governments of National Unity (GNUs) and the Preponderance of the Incumbency: Case of Kenya and Zimbabwe

Jephias Mapuva

Bindura University of Science Education, Faculty of Science, Department of Geography [Development Studies stream], P.O. Box 1020, Bindura, Zimbabwe. Email address: mapuva@coolgoose.com

Accepted 21 October, 2013




Political contestation through elections is a vital tenet of democracy. In elections, the electorate seek to choose political leaders in line with international best practice. The disputed elections in Kenya (2007) and Zimbabwe (2008) had the propensity to degenerate into ethnic civil war and political acrimony respectively. It took mediation efforts of Koffi Annan and Mr Thabo Mbeki to cobble up ruling coalitions to govern each of the countries respectively. The paper deliberates on the fact that the transitional arrangements were a temporary reprieve to curtail violence, for political players to re-group and to make time to cool political temperatures. However, such arrangements pitted political foes into one government though the chances of fostering complete unison were evidently very remote. The paper argues that the outcome of the post-GNU dispensation in the two countries is rooted in the preponderance of the incumbency in which the major political players took advantage of their weaker coalition partners to manipulate the different public institutions for political gain. The paper concludes that the former opposition parties or their associates continue to play second fiddle and eventually lose the post-GNU elections.

Keywords: Conflict; Government of National Unity; Zimbabwe; Kenya; ethnic; peace-building



Current Issue: November 2013


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