Monday, 2 February 2015

Namibian electronic voting

As this blog entry suggests, Namibia - not the richest country in Africa - seems an unlikely arena for the first national election on the continent to be conducted via electronic voting machines. There were unexpected delays in producing the results, but otherwise the exercise was reported to be well-managed and its conduct "free and fair".

The voting machines were purchased from the Bharat company in India at what appears to be a bargain price compared with US technology. The company claims that, once programmed at the factory, they are tamper-proof. (Reports of interference with e-voting machines in some States have inhibited their wider adoption in the USA.) This is all to the good, but for the sake of transparency in democracy, the actual logic used needs to be made public and, if necessary, debated before it is signed off for incorporation.

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