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Democracy and Development in Africa


Democracy and Development in Africa ECON 3510 A.R.M. Ritter June 17, 2014 Source: Text Chapter 11 – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Democracy and Development in Africa

  • Democracy and Development in Africa
  • ECON 3510
  • A.R.M. Ritter June 17, 2014
  • Source Text Chapter 11

  • Outline
  • Introduction
  • Characteristics of a Well-Functioning State
  • Defining Democracy
  • The Colonial Heritage in Governance
  • Governance since Independence
  • Improving Governance
  • Democracy and Development

  • I. Introduction
  • Intense interest in African Governance in recent
  • reflecting governance problems,
  • Examples
  • African Organizations
  • NGOs and INGOs,
  • e.g. Transparency International
  • IFIs World Bank AfDB.
  • Donor Countries

  • II. Some Characteristics of a Well- Function
    ing State
  • Maintenance of Peace, Law and Order
  • Acceptance and Success re the Responsibility to
  • Maintenance and Enhancement of Individual Rights
    and Liberties
  • Fundamental UN Universal Declaration type rights
  • Political and civil liberties
  • Authentic Representative Government
  • Checks and Balances on Exercise of Arbitrary
  • Transparency and Accountability
  • A legitimate political process

  • Effective Functioning of the State
  • Revenue generation
  • Provision of public goods (infrastructural, .)
  • Redistributive equity
  • Effective public policy
  • Effective Legal System and Independent Judiciary
  • Independent from Government
  • Impartial and fair
  • Dispute resolution
  • Enforcement of contracts, rights, etc.

III. Defining Democracy
  • Multidimensional and complex phenomena
  • Process and Principle Democracy
  • Process Democracy Are leaders selected in free
    and fair elections
  • Principle Democracy Are individual and
    minority rights respected?
  • Majoritarian and Consensual
  • Majoritarian does the majority rule?
  • Consensual do all groups have some say and
    are their rights protected against the majority?

III. Defining Democracy, continued
  • Huntingdons definition
  • system is democratic to the extent that the
    most powerful collective decision-makers are
  • through fair, honest and periodic elections
  • candidates freely compete for votes
  • all the adult population is eligible to vote.

  • IV. The Colonial Heritage re Governance
  • Inadequate tutelage re Representative Government
    under Colonialism
  • Variation among colonies
  • Indirect Rule in some areas
  • Inadequate education of personnel for the
    operation of national states
  • e.g. Congo Almost Zero self-rule tutelage and
  • But note
  • Ethiopia no Colonial Occupation (except
    1936-1941 with Mussolini)
  • Liberia long history of Independence since

  • V. Evolution of Governance since Independence
  • At Independence, early 1960s to early 1970s
  • Western-type political systems, but often by
    parachute rather than evolutionary assimilation
  • Plus strong nationalist or nation-building
    ideologies in many cases
  • For a while, quite successful re maintaining law
    and order, improving human development, economic
    growth and structural change
  • A Golden Age for African countries ! ?

  • 1970s to 1990s Shift to Autocratic Military Rule
    and One-Party Authoritarian Systems
  • Military coups in 70s
  • (Congo-B., Benin, Togo, Burundi, Ghana, Nigeria,
    Upper Volta, Mali, Somalia, Ethiopia, Uganda)
  • By 1990, about 50 of the continent was under
    military authoritarian rule
  • Plus Single-Party States and some Single Party
    Dominant States
  • 1975-1990 a period of worsening economic
    regression, weakening governance, and social
    reversals. HDI declined for some countries
  • What was cause and what was effect re economic
    regression and worsening governance?

Political Map of the World, 1972
Some African Dictators
Omar Bongo, The Cameroon
Idi Amin Uganda
Bokassa, Central African Empire
Mobutu, Ziare
Some African Statesmen
Desmond Tutu
Julius Nyerere
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
Nelson Mandela
  • 1990s to 2000s
  • Political Liberalization and the beginnings of
    Economic Recovery
  • Political change occurred in most countries, due
    usually to popular pressures
  • By 2000, many African countries had held
    multi-party elections
  • Some economic rehabilitation and recovery
    underway in most countries

  • Current Regimes in Africa
  • Democratic Pluralism See Chart
  • Structures of Government
  • Popular Participation
  • Question Is our concern with Governance and a
    focus on Representative Democracy simply Western
  • The Chinese alternative
  • Freedom House Map of the World http//www.freedomh

(No Transcript)
Government World Map 2013 by Saint-Tepes
The Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance, 2011
See http//
  • Funded and led by
  • The Ibrahim Foundation
  • Africa's leading assessment
  • of governance
  • 86 indicators grouped into 14 sub-categories and
    four dimensions re governance
  • Uses indicators from 23 data providers

  • Ibrahim Index includes
  • Safety and the Rule of Law
  • (4 dimensions 19 measures)
  • Participation and Human Rights
  • (3 and 21)
  • Sustainable Economic Opportunity
  • (4 and 27)
  • Human Development
  • (3 and 18)

  • State Variation regarding Capabilities
  • Failed States Cases of Total Breakdown
  • at this time, perhaps only Somalia
  • Violent Conflict or Civil War
  • Protracted Civil Wars previously in some cases
  • At present Mali at the Edge
  • Areas of concern S. Sudan, Ethiopia and Eritrea,
    Chad, Northern Nigeria
  • Note In 1999
  • 20 of Africas people lived in countries with
    war or civil conflict
  • 90 of casualties were civilians
  • 20 million land mines were laid, 9 million in
    Angola alone

  • 3. Decayed States facing near or severe crisis
  • worsening institutional capacities cause and
    also caused by economic stagnation and
  • Zimbabwe, Malawi?
  • 4. States with Reasonable to Very Good
  • Some Highly Effective Mauritius, R. South
    Africa, Botswana, Liberia??
  • Others reasonably effective
  • Ghana, Tanzania, Kenya, Nigeria

  • Explaining Africas Difficulties re Governance
  • A number of possible factors
  • Pre-Colonial Legacy?
  • Colonial Legacy?
  • Ethnic Diversity? Weakness of National
  • Inexperience of new regimes and people?
  • Quality of Leadership?
  • Weak economic performance

  • V. Improving Governance
  • Strengthening the integrity and legitimacy of the
    electoral process and acceptance of the rules of
    the game
  • Concept and practice of a loyal opposition
  • Political parties and their financing
  • Access to the media
  • Credibility and transparency of the electoral
  • Electoral Commissions

  • Social inclusiveness regional, ethnic, racial,
    religious and gender balance in
  • Government or parliament
  • Civil service
  • Distribution of public goods and social services
  • Strengthening Public Voice
  • Freedom of Speech Independent Media
  • Free press and independent critical journalism
  • Strengthening independence of civil organs of

  • 4. Enhancing support for Human Rights and the
    Rule of Law
  • Ensure
  • Equal access to justice and the legal system
  • Ender equality and womens rights
  • Cultural and social rights e.g. for indigenous

  • VII. Democracy and Development
  • Question What is the relationship between
    Democracy and Development?
  • Does democracy promote development?
  • Does development promote democracy?
  • Central conclusion Strong correlation circular
    causation or mutual reinforcement
  • Generally, the more democratic the country, the
    better the policies and the better the economic
    performance in terms of growth and incomes
  • But what is cause and what is effect?

  • The Impacts of Democracy on Development
  • What is development? Growth, equity
  • What is democracy? (again)
  • Process democracy are leaders elected in free
    and fair elections?
  • Principles democracy are individual rights
  • Majoritarian does the majority rule?
  • Consensual do all groups have some say and are
    their rights protected against the majority?
  • Huntingdon the most powerful decision-makers
    are selected through fair honest and periodic
    elections in which candidates compete for votes
    and all the adult population has a right to vote.

  • Does economic development promote democracy?
  • Modernization Approach
  • Yes! Development helps generate democracy.
  • How? Higher GDPpc ? better education, more
    urbanization, more organized with independent
    civil organs of society, better communications ?
    stronger demands for political inclusion and
    eventually democracy
  • OR, as authoritarian regimes prosper, they
    produce the conditions for democratization (one
    hopes) (Is this happening in China?)

  • How does development affect democracy?
  • 2. Neo-modernization Approach
  • Contrary view to Modernization Approach as
    development occurs, older political systems may
    become unstable, so that political breakdown or
    emergence of authoritarian regimes may occur.
  • i.e. Development may lead to instability and
  • Sometime afterwards, a stronger democracy may
    emerge, but with difficulty.
  • Maintaining stability is vital.

  • Neo-modernization Approach, contd
  • Relationship between development and democracy is
    more complex.
  • Levels of development may not predict well the
    type of regime that will emerge after the decay
    or collapse of an old regime.
  • 3. Civil Society Approach
  • Countries where civil society is well established
    may be better placed to be more democratic.
  • What is civil society?

  • 4. Structural explanation
  • Class analysis
  • the stronger specific classes capitalist or
    workers the greater the role they will play
  • development generates classes which then may
    promote democracy
  • Conclude

  • Does Authentic Democracy Promote Development?
  • Note Democracies are vital for their own sake.
  • Note also Democracy may be messy , risky and
  • But it is also fun- lots of the time!
  • Genuine Democracy may ensure that policies
    promote the common well being more so than
  • Democracies are more accountable than
    authoritarian regimes

  • 3. Peaceful regime change is possible when
    governments mess-up, or when times and conditions
  • Policy adjustment , improvement and evolution
    can occur
  • 4. In democracies, individual economic rights are
    protected better than in authoritarian regimes
    where the rule of law is dubious
  • 5. But special interests may dominate and pervert
    policies towards their own interests

  • Established democracies seemed to perform better
    in terms of growth, savings levels, human
    development indicators,
  • Newly established democracies also performed
    well, but with some higher inflation, lower
    savings, higher debt.

  • Main conclusion?
  • The evidence supports both these propositions
  • Development ? ? Democracy, and
  • Democracy ? ? Development

The Future of Democracy in Africa
  • Grounds for Optimism
  • General economic improvement supports genuine
  • Human development plus communications promotes
  • Theorizing (Modernization Civil Society
    Structural) imply a strengthening of democracy
  • International opinion legitimacy are supportive
  • Down-side Risks
  • Example of China
  • Chances of economic regression