The spectre of Cambridge Analytica still haunts African elections | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


The spectre of Cambridge Analytica still haunts African elections

Elections are big business, and look no further than the ongoing frenzy over the upcoming Nigerian election for proof. It is hard to miss how much money is being made in both the main event and the ecosystem around it.

Politicians are no longer just candidates, but also brands, backed by elaborate merchandising and advertising apparatuses that are designed to catapult their public image to victory. Outside the core tug of war, media companies around the world wrestle for the attention of viewers, listeners and readers with elaborate, attention-grabbing infographics and chyrons.

The triumph of political style over substance in the capitalist election is almost complete, and with it the unparalleled influence of money over political decision-making. As Nigeria inches towards this critical vote, it does so in the shadow of profound questions about the changing nature of elections in Africa and beyond.

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