20 October 2011
Presidential elections were held in Cameroon on 9 October 2011, with twenty three official candidates, among them John Fru Ndi, leader of the main opposition party, the Social Democratic Front, SDF, an SI member, with the results expected to be announced by the Supreme Court in the next few days.
The Secretary General of the Socialist International, Luis Ayala, was present for these elections, following an earlier visit to Cameroon with a delegation of the Socialist International in August this year to make the case for the holding of free and fair elections in that country. A number of concerns were raised by the Socialist International at the time in relation to the holding of these elections, namely the composition of ELECAM (Elections Cameroon), the body appointed to oversee the electoral process; the need for a clear and precise electoral register; and the importance of a single ballot paper to reduce the possibility of abuses and to simplify elections with multiple candidates.
In the wake of the elections, a number of serious shortcomings were witnessed and reported by the SDF, by presidential candidates of the opposition, NGOs and civil society organisations including Transparency International Cameroon. The composition of ELECAM was a central issue, as it lacked representation of civil society actors, of the opposition or NGOs and its board members were appointed by the President. It was also found that the electoral register had not been updated, resulting in people being registered more than once; voting cards were handed out by ruling party members and neighbourhood leaders in direct violation of legal dispositions, leading to individuals possessing multiple voting cards as well as cards being issued for people who were deceased; polling stations were set up in private homes and military camps, they often lacked an ELECAM representative, and many voting stations opened only in the afternoon to then close at 18.00 hrs, and in a number of stations in both Douala and Yaoundé, the counting of the votes had to be carried out in the dark.
Voter turn-out was exceptionally low, with an estimated 70% either abstaining from the process or prevented from voting because of missing voting cards according to local and other international observer organisations. This has been seen as a sign of the deep-seated resignation felt in many parts of Cameroonian society in regard to the impact they can have on the political life of their country.
The number of irregularities observed led seven presidential candidates, among them SDF leader John Fru Ndi, to issue a Declaration on 15 October stating that “Elections Cameroon completely failed to organise free and fair elections” and further called for the annulment of the elections, “the revision of all electoral laws, and the establishment of a new electoral system within 6 months and the conducting of new Presidential elections”.
In accordance with the decisions of the International in regard to Cameroon, in particular of the SI Africa Committee at its meeting in July in Windhoek, the SI Secretary General conveyed in Yaoundé to John Fru Ndi and the SDF, as well as to the opposition candidates signatories of the Declaration, the full support of the Socialist International in their struggle for the recognition of their right to free and fair elections, and appeals for a new electoral system in Cameroon which would guarantee the democratic rights of the Cameroonian people, and ensure that their decisions are respected.
Member Party Congresses
Resolutions and Decisions of the XXV SI Congress
Report to the XXV SI Congress
25 July 2018
29 July 2018
Report of the Secretary General
Resolutions and Decisions of the XXIV Congress
13 SEPTEMBER 2016
Despite the election of opposition parliamentarians for the first time in twenty years, legislative elections in Belarus have not delivered true democracy to the people of that country. The Socialist International reiterates its firm support and solidarity to all those in Belarus engaged in the fundamental struggle for democracy and human rights. On 11 September 2016, Belarusian citizens went to the polls for parliamentary elections, the results of which are now known. The new parliament contains two opposition MPs, the first elected since 1996, but remains overwhelmingly dominated by those who support President Alexander Lukashenko....
22 JULY 2016
The Socialist International firmly denounces and condemns the sentencing of Ousainou Darboe, leader of the opposition United Democratic Party (UDP) of Gambia, an SI member party, along with 18 other party members and sympathisers, to 3 years imprisonment, having been arbitrarily detained since 16 April 2016 following a peaceful demonstration. The SI utterly deplores this travesty of justice and calls for their immediate release. We equally call on the international community to join forces in denouncing the conduct of the dictatorial regime of Yahya Jammeh and calling for an end to the continuing violation of human rights in that country...
- ♦ 23 August 2016
- With great sorrow the SI has learned of the death while in jail of Ebrima Solo Kurumah, UDP party member, the second such case in five months. The SI calls for an urgent full investigation into the circumstances of this tragic death. The Socialist International remains extremely concerned about the lives of all those protestors incarcerated as we have now seen two political prisoners of this group who have lost their lives in the last few months.
16 JULY 2016
The Socialist International condemns the attempt by military forces in Turkey last night and in the early hours of this morning, to bring down the legitimately elected government of the country. Our organisation wholeheartedly shares and fully supports the clear and unequivocal statements made by the leaders of the CHP and the HDP, members of our global political family, as the coup attempt unfolds. Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, leader of the CHP, said that the country had suffered previous coups and these developments should never be repeated in Turkey, adding that his party fully depends on the free will of the people, indispensable to Turkey’s parliamentary democracy…
12 April 2016
The Socialist International denounces the grave disregard of the sovereign will of the Venezuelan people and the usurpation of powers by the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice (TSJ) of the country, which yesterday declared as unconstitutional the Amnesty and National Reconciliation Law that had been approved by a majority in the National Assembly on 29 March this year. The resounding electoral victory in the elections to the National Assembly at the beginning of December 2015 was based on a clear proposal...
CIS, Caucasus and Black Sea
04 APRIL 2016
The Socialist International has followed with great concern the hostilities and attacks that have taken place in the last 48 hours between Armenians and Azerbaijanis with a regrettable loss of numerous lives. Our International calls for an immediate ceasefire and for an end to these hostilities, and at the same time reiterates the urgent need for a resumption of dialogue within the framework of the Minsk Group, a body accepted by both Armenia and Azerbaijan and recognised by the multilateral organisations, to resolve through negotiation and in accordance with the principles of international law...
22 FEBRUARY 2016
In recent years the people of Africa have continued advancing and moving forward democratic governance in an important number of countries of the region. Today, more and more people in that continent enjoy freedoms and rights, a precondition for progress, development and peace. Members of the Socialist International in a good number of countries in Africa have been protagonists and actors of an era of change that has been bringing new opportunities and a new face to the political life of the continent. Nevertheless, authoritarianism, oppression and other evils of the past still linger in the political life of some of the countries in the region...
28 March 2016
The Socialist International expresses its solidarity with the people of Pakistan as they come to terms with the horrendous terrorist attack carried out yesterday near Lahore. Over 70 people lost their lives as they enjoyed a Sunday afternoon in the park, including numerous women and children, and over 300 were injured. We strongly denounce this violent act, as we have other such terrorist attacks in Pakistan and elsewhere. Our thoughts and condolences are with the family and friends of the deceased and our sympathy is with all those injured and suffering as a result...
Standing with Colombia for peace
26 SEPTEMBER 2016
The Socialist International greets the historic signing today in Cartagena of the Peace Accord between the government of Colombia and the FARC, successfully concluding a process which began more than four years ago in Havana. Our International is among those accompanying this significant event, maintaining its commitment and support for peace in Colombia today and for the post-conflict period of disarmament and reconciliation.
02 DECEMBER 2016
SI condemns terrorist attack against member party KDP-Iran
21 DECEMBER 2016
The Socialist International firmly condemns the terrorist attack against the party headquarters in Arbil of the SI member Kurdistan Democratic Party, KDP-Iran, which took place on 20 December. The attack was carried out as party members were leaving a memorial ceremony honouring former party leader Abdulrahman Ghassemlou, who was assassinated in Vienna in 1989.
Four party members, a member of the youth organisation and a security guard died in the attack and several others were seriously injured.
Our International extends its deepest condolences to the families and comrades of those killed. The SI reiterates its strong solidarity with all members of the KDP-Iran at this difficult time.
4 NOVEMBER 2016
The Socialist International firmly deplores the arrest this morning of Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ, Co-Chairs of the People’s Democratic Party (Halkların Demokratik Partisi), HDP, an SI member party, and the detention of 11 other HDP parliamentarians, in a further blow to Turkish democracy following earlier crackdowns and restrictions on the freedoms and rights of the citizens of that country. The HDP is the third largest political party in Turkey and won seats in parliament in June 2015 despite the existing 10% threshold, and again in the elections re-called in November 2015. In May this year, the immunity that MPs usually hold from prosecution was removed from HDP members. Party members have subsequently protested against repeated raids of their homes and offices...
21 OCTOBER 2016
The Socialist International deplores the decision adopted yesterday, Thursday 20 October, by the Electoral National Council (CNE) of Venezuela to postpone until a new judicial order the process of collection of 20% of signatures required to activate a recall referendum on the government of Nicolás Maduro scheduled for 26, 27 and 28 of this month. In its public declaration, the CNE bases its decision on compliance with the Constitution and observance of precautionary measures adopted by the criminal courts of Valencia, San Fernando Apure, Aragua and Bolivar, after accepting complaints for alleged electoral crimes against the political forces which are members of the Mesa de Unidad Democrática (MUD), an alliance which includes member parties of the SI, in the process to activate the recall referendum...
14 OCTOBER 2016
As the world continues to witness the tragedy taking place in Syria, the Socialist International calls for renewed concerted efforts by the international community to stop the carnage and human suffering which has intensified following the breakdown last month of the brief ceasefire that lasted less than a week. The Syrian people are hostages to a conflict that transcends their country and whose solution today lies primarily outside their borders. According to United Nations figures, some 13.5 million Syrians are today requiring humanitarian assistance…