Friday, April 08, 2011

Samoa's democratic decline continues

Samoa had an election last month, and as usual for Samoan elections, the courts are now busy dealing with election petitions from disappointed candidates, as well as private prosecutions for bribery from candidates who did not receive enough votes to file petitions. Samoa's Prime Minister thinks this makes the country look bad. But he has a solution: ban election petitions. In other words, let people get away with buying elections.

As the Samoa Observer points out, there is another alternative. The number of petitions is so high because electoral corruption is ingrained in Samoa. The government could instead stamp it out and ensure clean elections. But how would that help the Human Rights Protection party stay in power?