Security hampers 10-year African governance growth

2016-10-04 13:30
File: AFP

File: AFP

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

London - Governance in Africa has gradually improved over the past 10 years but has been held back by deteriorating security and the rule of law, an annual index tracking development showed on Monday.

At least 70% of African citizens now live in a country that has improved in overall governance since 2006, showed the 10th annual Ibrahim Index of African Governance, launched in London.

Across Africa, there were advances in human development; participation and human rights; and in sustainable economic opportunity. However, safety and the rule of law fell back.

Almost two thirds of Africans live in states where security and the rule of law have plunged, notably in Libya, the Central African Republic (CAR) and Burundi.

"The improvement in overall governance in Africa over the last decade reflects a positive trend in a majority of countries," said founder Mo Ibrahim, the Sudan-born telecoms tycoon.

"The decline in safety and the rule of law is the biggest issue facing the continent," he said.

Mauritius top, Somalia bottom

In the 2016 index, the top five countries overall, scored out of 100, were Mauritius (79.9), Botswana (73.7), Cape Verde (73.0), Seychelles (72.6) and Namibia (69.8).

The bottom five were Eritrea (30.0), Libya (29.0), CAR (25.7), South Sudan (18.6) and Somalia (10.6).

The annual index's 10th anniversary gave an opportunity to look at how countries have performed over a decade-long period.

The index ranks countries using figures derived from 95 indicators grouped under four overarching categories.

Over the 10 years in which the index has been running, Ivory Coast has been the biggest riser, up 13.1 points, ahead of Togo and Zimbabwe, both up 9.7 points; Liberia, up 8.7; and Rwanda, up 8.4.

Ivory Coast's rise has been driven by progress in participation and human rights, and in safety and the rule of law, in which it registers the largest improvement on the continent.

The biggest fallers have been Libya, down 18.0; Madagascar, down 7.6; Eritrea, down 5.6; CAR, down 4.9; and Mali, down 4.7.

IT driving change 

Across the 95 indicators, the best improvements across Africa over the past decade were in digital and IT infrastructure (up 23.6), human rights conventions (up 15.7) and child mortality (up 14.2) -- a category in which every country registered progress since 2006.

The worst falls were in the soundness of banks (down 21.5), government involvement in armed conflict (down 18.2) and safety of the person (down 15.9).

The greatest improvements in the business environment were registered in Niger, Rwanda, Ivory Coast, Togo and Kenya.

Valerie Amos, Ibrahim Foundation board member and a former British international development minister, hailed the fact that citizens in 37 out of 54 countries were living in countries that had improved in governance since 2006.

The one-point average rise is "not a huge improvement over 10 years but it is about the importance of direction of travel," she told AFP.

She said improving transparency and accountability were "absolutely the key" to better governance.

"I remain cautiously optimistic about the future of the continent," she added.

Read more on:    security  |  africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.