The Implications of the 'No Term/Third Term' Politics to Democracy and Constitutionalism in Africa: A Case Study of Uganda
19 Pages Posted: 18 Dec 2008
Date Written: December 18, 2008
Third term politics refers to the removal of term limits to sanction an executive dictatorship and life presidency for the incumbent. The removal of term limits is a constituent part of the process of incremental despotism by the rulers as they would concentrate powers in the presidency and violate the notion of separation of powers as a safe guard against authoritarianism. The process of securing a third term comes with a number of consequences to democracy and constitutionalism.
Third term politics has not been a pre-occupation of Ugandan alone. Other countries have followed suite. There have been attempts to amend the constitutions of Namibia, Malawi, Zambia though these were thwarted by the Legislature. Cameroon has succeeded in securing a life presidency for President Paul Bia. Third term politics thrives in an environment where there is no functioning democracy and it high lights the usual tendency of the executive in Africa to rear its ugly head into the independence of the judiciary and the legislature at the expense of democracy and constitutionalism.
This paper analyses the democratic and constitutional underpinnings of the "third term" politics and its implications for democratic governance and constitutionalism in Uganda as a case study.
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