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How the Promise Tracker works

Politicians running for election make many promises. Africa Check can’t track them all, so which ones should we choose to cover? And how should we measure progress in keeping these promises? As we develop our Promise Tracker, we want to know what you think.

Every year, research firms and pollsters ask people in African countries what they most care about in their lives. The answers tend to be the same, whatever the political views of would-be voters. They want more jobs, more and better schools and health services, more roads and railways, safer communities… in a nutshell, a better standard of living.

Africa Check noted the issues that mattered most to Kenyans, Nigerians and South Africans and used them to select the 29 pledges whose progress we have assessed so far on the tracker. We will soon be adding, to our French-language site, the promises made to Senegalese voters.

Our tracker covers campaign periods going back five years. To find the promises that mattered most, we looked through ruling party manifestos, political party websites and the transcripts of key speeches made during election campaigns.

Update immediately if major shift on promise

We will keep adding to these pledges and regularly track the progress on them. We’ll judge this progress against the best evidence that is publicly available and link to it so you can judge things for yourself.

For starters, we will do this every six months, but when there is major shift in the status of a pledge we will update it immediately. Our hope is that you will be better informed as a result.

Voters in Nigeria, Senegal and South Africa head to the polls in 2019, so May 2018 is a good time to introduce the Promise Tracker. But we will still be there after the elections.

Don’t hesitate to give us your feedback – on promises you would like us to check and how you understand the progress in keeping them. E-mail us at [email protected] or reach out on our social media pages. Find us on Twitter and Facebook.


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