Electoral Violence and Young Party Cadres in Zambia

Zambia’s 2016 general elections were a turning point in the country’s political
history, with electoral violence threatening its democratic fabric. This paper
analyses accounts of electoral campaigns by one private online newspaper,
the Lusaka Times, to reflect on the relationship between electoral violence
and young party cadres. Evidence from the study indicates that negative
socioeconomic conditions, leadership manipulation and incentives as well
as the perception of plural politics all contribute to the susceptibility of
young people to electoral violence. The violence witnessed in 2016 included
molestation and intimidation, seizure of public property, public disorder,
vandalising of party property, lawlessness and aggressive rhetoric. The
paper also notes that events of 2016 were counterweight to the consolidation
of democracy as the activities of young party cadres undermined the free
political participation of other stakeholders.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Journal of African Elections
Tags: electoral campaigns, electoral violence, young party cadres, Zambia
journal of african elections vol18 number 1 transparent democratic governance in africa