Democratic Transition in Anglophone West Africa by Jibrin Ibrahim

By Jibrin Ibrahim

Ibrahim deals a comparative learn of the democratic transitions within the Anglophone international locations of West Africa, opting for neighborhood tendencies and discreet elements. He argues that democracy is creeping up the schedule, because of a detremined fight for human rights and since democracy has been denied to the folks for thus lengthy. He identifies a couple of universal matters around the zone: the increase of a militarised secular kingdom; an important bring up in public corruption; the primitive accumulation of capital; an extreme conflict to deepen democracy among civil society and the kingdom; the appropriation of gender poltiics via the country during the place of work of the 'first ladies'; and the becoming dissidence among elections and political selection. The learn additionally addresses what should be thought of an appropriate nearby version in Ghana, and an unacceptable instance in Liberia.

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In 1971, there was a very bloody attempted coup by Brigadier J. Bangura in which many people were killed, including the coup leader. Since that period, political violence has been a central feature of the political life of Sierra Leone. Militarism and State Character In 1978, Siaka Stevens declared a state of emergency and turned Sierra Leone into a one-party state. This move made formal and open opposition to the regime impossible. At the same time, the level of corruption of the regime became very high and its unpopularity skyrocketed.

The Nigerian legal system has continued in a fairly combative mood. In 1984, the whole legal profession rose against the suspension of due process and systematisation of military tribunals to ‘persecute’ rather than ‘prosecute’ politicians. They tried, even if with limited success, to resist the authoritarian excesses of the Babangida regime. The assassination of Dele Giwa, editor of Newswatch magazine, for example, led to an important civil liberties case. Dele Giwa was said to have been interrogated and threatened just before his death by Colonel Halilu Akilu, the Director of Military Security and Lt.

A third of the district assembly is also nominated by the President, and they are usually ‘big men’ who overshadow the locally elected members. Perhaps the most striking conclusion of most of the Ghanaian scholars with whom I have discussed this issue is that the real objective of the decentralisation programme has been to provide a rural political base for President Jerry Rawlings. This has served him well by enabling him to win elections and stabilise the political system. But the objective of empowering the people has so far been set aside.

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