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Political election buying in polls: the voter’s issue

 For every political election that is purchased, you will find a giver (the political candidate), the receiver (the voter) and the lender. Nevertheless , most discussion posts on vote buying usually concentrate on the politicians rather than the voters. Certainly, it is true that the individuals (and their financiers) may carry much of the fault because they lure voters with resources, but supply is obviously made in reaction to demand. This specific is why Content 33(1) of the Representation of the People Law (1992) and the Politics Parties Law 2k (Act 574) criminalise vote buying for both the provider and receiver. A single reason, consequently, that the practice of vote buying has persisted and degenerated to this express is that the electorate demands settlement for voting in elections.

Party financing

Unlike in superior democracies where gathering members and sympathisers fund those activities of political parties, the case is somewhat the alternative in Ghana. Generally, not only do party people not pay fees or subscriptions to finance the activities of their celebrations; the electorate (both as party delegates and as the general electorate) also demand money from individuals and aiming officeholders before voting for them. In fact as the canton complains about the corruption of our leaders and the ineffectiveness in resolving the nation’s developing challenges, many political figures also lament about the frequent with regard to remuneration by voters before casting their ballots.

We must concern why the canton demands, or at least accepts, fraction from politicians before they cast their votes, in particular when it is an against the law activity. Using the concept of Industry for Lemons propounded by George Akerlof in his 70 paper, “The Industry for Lemons: Good quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism”, this article attempts to resolve the question by examining how information asymmetry reduces the quality of goods on the market. In sum, Akerlof argues that if buyers can no longer separate between a lower-quality good (lemon) and a high-quality good (peach), chances are they will only be offering the average price of the citrus and the peach for both goods (which will be less than the buying price of peach). Consequently, peach sellers will eventually be driven from the market, causing only lemons on the industry.


Utilizing this analogy, let us imagine there are two varieties of politicians, that is, the nice ones (who will there be to serve the eyes of the electorate) and the virus ridden ones (who will there be for private gain). Because of the lack of visibility and honesty amongst the electorate and personal candidates, there is information asymmetry in the political system, so that arrêters cannot distinguish between good and bad politicians, not knowing which prospect will serve their interest if voted into office.

So that you can lower their losses (where the prospect will fail to work their interest after being voted into office), the décider demands compensation prior to election. As this occurs, the price tag on fighting for the polls is hiked to levels that only a corrupt presidential candidate can afford. Gradually, a good presidential candidate is forced either to leave the industry (bow out of the race), or become corrupt (find the money to cover the compensation to voters).

Thus, information asymmetry between political figures and the canton causes a situation where voters detrimentally select corrupt political figures on their own and drive away good politicians. Every this analysis, until and unless there is symmetric information and trust between the electorate and political candidates, the electorate will keep demanding compensation before voting for job hopefuls.

Delivering promises

This kind of is particularly relevant in the Ghanaian context where individuals have lost trust in the personal system and have become disillusioned by political parties and their candidates. Typically the failure of effective governments of the political duopoly (NPP and NDC) to deliver on their promises under the 4th Republic of Ghana, as well for the reason that clear and sudden increase in standard of existing of political officeholders, has eroded people confidence in the ruling class. Typically the electorate then becomes transactional in their political dealings, and views election times as “cocoa seasons” — an possibility to demand their promote of the countrywide cake and earnings from the dangerous system, even if it is through against the law means.

In the event we make an effort to fix the situation and bring back the “peach sellers” (good politicians), the land must try to reconstruct trust and self confidence in the personal system, so that voters can relaxation assured that their representatives are there to serve their best interests. This specific can only happen if politicians are honest with the electorate about what they can really achieve, and work hard to offer on their election pledges. This will eventually increase voters’ peace of mind, and go a long way to reduce the need for compensation by arrêters before an selection.


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