“Disgrace” and a “mess”: Africans taken aback by U.S. election turmoil

President Donald Trump has alleged fraud without providing evidence, filed lawsuits and called for recounts in several states in the US elections

For some Africans, President Donald Trump’s actions in the aftermath of the U.S. election have been a cause for dark humour, while others reacted with dismay or disbelief.

In countries whose own recent elections were marred by accusations of cheating and violence, some expressed concern about what signal Trump’s premature declaration of victory, allegations of fraud and flurry of lawsuits might send to their own leaders.

“Trump is setting a bad example for Africa and a country like ours. You cannot proclaim yourself in an election where you are a candidate when justice exists,” said Mory Keïta, a car parts dealer in Guinea.

Dozens of people were killed in protests before and after the West African country’s president won a contested third term last month.

“It’s a total disgrace,” said Bachir Diallo, a Guinean mining executive. “Such a mess is worthy of a banana republic.”

As Democrat Joe Biden edged closer to victory over President Donald Trump, others felt a sharp sense of irony seeing events play out in a developed nation whose authorities regularly admonish African leaders for not respecting democratic norms.

Trump, who during the long and rancorous campaign attacked the integrity of the American voting system, has alleged fraud without providing evidence, filed lawsuits and called for at least one recount.

When the U.S. Embassy in Guinea’s neighbour Côte d’Ivoire called on Wednesday for dialogue and commitment to the rule of law following another disputed presidential election, some people took umbrage.

“I believe the playground response is ‘why you talking about yourself?’” one Twitter user wrote.

“They tell us about democracy, it’s simply a hoax. They don’t mean it,” said Maurice Nandasaba, as he caught up with friends near a newsstand in Kenya’s capital Nairobi.

Asaase Radio 99.5 – tune in or log on to broadcasts online.

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