Presidential elections and the manipulation of exam success rate in Sub-Saharan Africa
This paper investigates whether the exam success rate in Africa increases significantly in the months prior to the occurrence of the presidential elections. It hypothesizes that the incumbent is tempted to increase the exam success rate to retain a form of social cohesion and to ‘buy’ votes. A sample of 15 francophone African countries observed from 1990 to 2009 yields three findings. First, post-exam presidential elections significantly increase the exam success rate by six percentage points. Second, the manipulation of the exam success rate is positively correlated with the re-election of the incumbent. Third, these results do not hold when elections occur before the exam dates or when the incumbent or a member of his/her party do not run for the presidential seat.
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