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Online resources for the 2012 Burkina Faso elections

October 31, 2012  »  WebNo Comment

Social media has been widely used in presidential elections across Africa, but it has been utilized to a lesser degree in parliamentary elections. Such appears to be the case in Burkina Faso – a nation with upcoming legislative and municipal elections. Still, there is plenty of online activity in advance of election day.

On December 2nd, Burkina Faso will hold parliamentary elections for the fifth time since 1978. The nation holds legislative and presidential elections every five years, with the presidential election falling two years before voters elect the National Assembly. In 2007, the ruling Congress for Democracy and Progress (CDP) won 73 out of 111 seats (59%), with the Alliance for Democracy and Federation-African Democratic Rally (ADF-RDC), taking 14 seats (11%). The remaining 11 parties split the rest of the 30% of the vote.

burkina faso political parties

The two main Burkinabé parties: majority CDP and next most popular ADF-RDA.

Our research finds substantial attention from a handful of newspapers, but less information on social media. Political party sites are robust, but seem to lack official Facebook pages. Perhaps the best source of information is radio, television, and print. Still, newspapers are publishing steady streams of news and opinion. Key social media users, mostly in Ouagadougou, are spreading the word. And, no doubt scores of Facebook users are sharing opinions as well.

Some top accessible sources for the 2012 Burkina Faso elections are listed below.

Online news:

Other resources:

Twitter highlights:

Thus far, we’ve counted fewer than 100 Tweets from 15 sources on the election from accounts with direct ties to Burkina Faso. Searches for the various political parties yield few results (4 for l’ADF-RDC, for example). The three main accounts that are sharing info have adopted the #faso2012 tag. They are:

Some of the more interesting tweets from the last week of October are embedded below.

Burkina24 asks citizens their thoughts about independent candidates:

If true, less than 25% of the population (and certainly fewer than 50% of adults) is registered to vote:

The Independent National Electoral Commission recently conducted the draw for the positioning of the 74 political parties taking part in elections on a single ballot:

The elections are an opportunity for peace and democracy:

Expect an increase in online news and Facebook activity as December 2nd nears. The 2012 elections may not be as intense as presidential elections and they may not be nail biters, but they still are important to Burkina Faso’s future.