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Guinea Needs Consensus on Poll Position if Election Race is to Pass Peacefully
Guinea Needs Consensus on Poll Position if Election Race is to Pass Peacefully
Report 199 / Africa

几内亚:选举困境的出路

执行摘要

两年前,几内亚举行了后殖民时代第一次真正的带有竞争性质的选举,阿尔法·孔戴当选为总统。两年后的今天,几内亚却仍然没有国民议会。即将举行的议会选举看起来很复杂:各民族之间的关系仍然高度紧张,2010年的选举进一步激化了这种紧张关系;另一方面,选举制度也极具争议性。2012年9月,几内亚成立了新的全国独立选举委员会 (Independent National Electoral Commission, 简称INEC),迈出了选举进程的重要一步,但是12月的选民登记册事件又再次使该进程停滞。孔戴总统必须与反对党展开真正的对话,而INEC也必须就选民登记册问题达成两方(执政党与反对党,译者注)同意的解决办法。在国际社会的支持下,几内亚政府和反对党必须巩固选举制度。要成立一个反映了几内亚的多样性的议会,给予反对党真正的话语权,恢复政治制衡,防止由民选总统取代非法的军事领袖所带来的希望走向幻灭,关键一点是要举行和平可信的议会选举。

孔戴总统上台一年多后,在政治对话包容性框架(Cadre de Dialogue Politique Inclusif, CDPI)下,政府和反对党之间就议会选举开始进行直接对话。两个月后,对话结束,取得的成果有限。2012年3月至2013年2月这段时间里,双方之间再未进行任何直接对话,取而代之的是一系列的调停、促进、协商和公告。尽管一些问题得到了解决、一些问题被搁置不谈,反对党仍在两个关键性问题上持坚决反对的立场:INEC和选民登记册问题。2012年8月27日反对党举行的抗议遭到政府禁止,导致首都科纳克里发生大范围的骚乱,此后不久,政府承诺重组INEC,而具有争议性的该委员会主席则提出不再连任。他的继任者巴卡里·福法纳在12月递交了一个时间表,把选举时间定在2013年5月12日。这是否是选举进程向前推进的一种信号呢?这种特殊形式的对话,再加上指责、政治运作和愤怒,最终是否会带来进展呢?

虽然事态有了一定进展,但是两极分化仍然严重。INEC新成员的任命导致了新的摩擦,新主席很快就遭致了严厉抨击。要解决选民登记册这一关键问题的机构却正是这个争论不休的委员会。12月10日,选民登记册问题所引发的紧张局势达到了一触即发的地步,福法纳拒绝发布一份由法语国家国际组织(Organisation internationale de la francophonie, OIF)撰写的关于选民登记册的报告,反对党指责福法纳此举违反了INEC的规定并考虑要求福法纳辞职。第二天,福法纳宣布选举将在2013年5月举行,这一举动进一步恶化了局势:反对党不同意选举举行的日期,声称该决定没有征询INEC全体会议的意见。

反对党还抗议说修改选民登记册的过程存在技术上的缺陷以及缺乏透明度,而为几内亚海外侨民参加投票进行的准备工作也不足。1月29日,反对党联合一些“中间派”政党召集新的示威活动,当局要求与反对党直接对话,想以此为策略让其取消示威活动,遭到了反对党的拒绝。2月11日,INEC举行新的会议讨论选民登记册问题,支持孔戴总统的大多数与会者投票同意对选民登记册进行有争议性的修改,而来自反对党的委员们则纷纷离场,这些委员可能会决定从此退出INEC。

总之,情况仍令人担忧。政府和反对党在根本性问题上持有不同意见,在这种情况下举行选举是很危险的。政府对反对党持蔑视的态度,足足花了快一年的时间才与其开展对话。反对党坚持认为孔戴总统是通过欺诈获选上台的,总统会倾向于不举行选举(或者说至少不希望进行透明的、双方同意的选举)。反对党指责现任政权有民族偏袒倾向。公民社会曾在20世纪末扮演了重要角色,现在却在政治和民族方面都分裂为不同派系。在民族纷争的背景下举行有争议的选举,无论从地方还是国家层面都会带来许多危险。

由选举引发的动荡可能会演变为重大的暴力事件。对安全部门进行的改革进展有限,安全部队和民众之间的关系仍然高度紧张,这些安全部队已经习惯了享有免罚特权,同时也受到了民族纷争的影响,警察和军队的暴行更是恶化了这种紧张局势。武装部队新近开始接受文职当局的领导,部队中的一些人对此还没有完全接受,而选举所引发的骚乱能给他们提供机会。

孔戴政权不能仅仅只谈论它实行的良治和在发展方面的雄心壮志:它还必须解决政治上的紧张局势。此外,举行一次可信的选举与选举会在五月份举行,这两者相比前者更为重要——尽管选举应该尽快举行,且必须在2013年12月以前举行,因为已经丧失了许多宝贵的时间。要想尽快并在2013年12月以前举行选举,开展对话是关键。通向选举的道路是崎岖的,但是将摩擦维持在最低程度,保持政党之间的严肃对话,重建对选举机构的信任,这几点至关重要。同时也有必要加强政治体系——司法机关,领土管理部门,安全部队,INEC和政党——的能力,公民社会也有必要通过恰当的、可信的方法来处理冲突,在接下来漫长的选举过程中冲突的出现在所难免。

达喀尔⁄布鲁塞尔,2013年2月18日

Op-Ed / Africa

Guinea Needs Consensus on Poll Position if Election Race is to Pass Peacefully

Originally published in The Guardian

Guinea’s history of electoral violence may not be over. Tension is building around the presidential poll scheduled for this October and the local elections planned for early next year. The opposition – principally Cellou Dalein Diallo's Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea and Sidya Touré’s Union of Republican Forces – is concerned about possible fraud. Threatened protests should be taken seriously: in 2013, about 100 people died during electoral unrest.

To set the stage for a comprehensive dialogue about the voting system, the local elections should be rescheduled for this year, so that they take place before the presidential ballot. International actors, in particular the UN Office for West Africa and the EU, would then need to support that dialogue and ensure its results are implemented.

Unlike other African countries with contentious electoral processes, Guinea’s problem is not one of an incumbent president delaying a vote or trying for an unconstitutional new term. The opposition's quarrel is with the order of the two elections. They are convinced that the local authorities, whose mandate formally expired in 2010, are completely under the president’s control.

These local officials, some of whom have been replaced by administrative appointees in constituencies where the opposition has weight, are said to have been responsible for a variety of disenfranchisement schemes in pro-opposition areas during the 2013 legislative elections. They have also been accused of massaging the vote in pro-government areas.

The opposition fears a repeat in the presidential contest unless earlier local polls give them a better chance to get fair play.

Before agreeing to the 2013 legislative elections, the opposition had insisted that the next round of local elections be held well before the presidential ballot, in early 2014. This was written into an annex of an agreement resulting from the 2013 political dialogue, but the government did not sign the document and now disputes the commitment.

Pro-government politicians do not support the schedule change (and possible delay of the presidential vote), fearing the opposition would claim there was a constitutional vacuum, as some opposition figures have threatened. But contemporary Guinea has experienced many exceptional situations – three- and five-year delays for the legislative and local elections respectively, for example. This would not cause it to crumble. In informal discussions, some opposition leaders said they would agree to a reasonable delay in the presidential election were it necessary in order to hold the local vote first.

The controversy, however, goes well beyond the calendar. The opposition has also repeatedly challenged the electoral registry, the map of constituencies, the composition and functioning of the electoral commission and the constitutional court. Not to mention the conditions for diaspora voting, the neutrality of prefects and governors, and much more. Even the recent population census is disputed: the opposition says the authorities inflated results in pro-government areas, in order to prepare to justify a forthcoming increase in pro-government voters there.

Reliable observation missions (particularly the EU’s) noted a long list of problems in the 2010 and 2013 elections. In 2013, for instance, the number of 18-year-old voters registered was unusually high in some pro-government areas, as was the level of participation and the number of voting stations. The number of polling stations and votes invalidated on procedural grounds was correspondingly low. In the closely disputed swing state of Guinée Forestière, the results from more than 180 polling stations were cancelled without explanation.

Some or all of the opposition claims may be false or exaggerated, but why take the chance over a few months’ change in the electoral calendar? As Crisis Group wrote in December 2014, a consensus on arrangements would offer the best chance to avoid an escalation from local incidents fuelled by political affiliations that function largely along ethnic lines.

Such a consensus would be all the more valuable because worrying rumours and suspicions are being fed by other matters, including the Ebola epidemic and a handful of assassinations and attempted assassinations of politicians and administrators. The opposition’s spokesperson, Aboubacar Sylla, claims he was shot at on 4 April, for example. While President Alpha Condé has done a good job of reining in the military and other security forces, sustained troubles could put these important achievements at risk and further poison relations between the country’s communities.

The government called for dialogue on 26 March. The opposition responded that there had been two such dialogues in 2013-14; the authorities simply needed to implement the conclusions reached then. It is up to the government to take the first step by asking the electoral commission to schedule the local elections before the presidential (with a reasonable three- to six-month interval between them). This would build confidence and could pave the way for a dialogue covering the other pending electoral issues. In turn, the opposition should commit to that dialogue and produce a detailed, realistic and time-sensitive assessment of what it considers essential.

In all this, international engagement is essential. In 2013, European observers stayed several nights at a key tallying centre in Conakry to guarantee results would not be tampered with. That is how tense the situation has been, and why an international presence is so essential.

President Condé initially excluded such missions for this year, but he has changed his position: the authorities have approached the EU for observers, and the UN is due to dispatch a mission this month to review electoral preparations. The new secretary general of the International Organisation of la Francophonie has visited Conakry. These are welcome moves. International partners will need to develop a solid coordinating mechanism, however, to prevent Guinean actors playing them off against each other.