envoyer par mail

Journal of Contemporary African Studies


2010 | 28 - 1


Alexander Stroh
Recent publications suggest that exclusively ethno-regional parties are as rare in sub-Saharan Africa as elsewhere. At the same time, the idea that ethnicity is a very special feature of African party politics persists. This article acknowledges the general relevance of ethnicity in party competition but emphasises the level at which it becomes important. It develops a micro-behavioural approach that pays particular attention to the strategic choices of party elites in order to supplement the dominant structuralist thinking in party research on Africa. An in-depth evaluation of detailed election data from Burkina Faso shows strategies that rely on personal proximity between the voter and the candidates influence the parties' success to a great extent. Parties maximise their chances of winning seats if they concentrate their limited resources on the home localities of leading party members. Hence, African party politics are less dependent on ethnic demography than is often implied but more open to change through elite behaviour.
Roger Tangri; Andrew M. Mwenda
There are various reasons why President Museveni is so determined to hold on to power in Uganda. These are similar to the ones motivating other African presidents seeking to entrench themselves in office. Museveni believes he is indispensable for Uganda's stability and prosperity, especially in a country devastated by bad leadership in earlier post-independence decades. Moreover, Museveni and his close allies are fearful of being prosecuted under a new president for alleged wrongdoings. Opposition to Museveni's continued stay in power has come from within the ruling party, as well as other parties and the Buganda kingdom. But, as elsewhere in Africa, the opposition is too weakly developed to challenge Museveni effectively. Also, presidential manipulations, election rigging, and coercive measures have helped to secure Museveni's grip on power. In particular, Museveni has used the military to entrench himself in office. Moreover, as in some African countries, international pressures to force Museveni to relinquish power are limited. In fact, donors have propped up a quasi-authoritarian regime with large amounts of resources. Museveni has overseen a prolonged period of economic and political stability and donors argue he deserves their support, even when his record on democracy and good governance is tainted. In Africa, presidential incumbents who have stepped down have done so because of the strength of domestic and international pressures. Where political opposition is organised and united or where international donors use their aid to promote greater democratisation, then leaders are more likely to abandon plans to stay in power. It is the absence of such conditions and pressures that are leading to the creation of a life presidency in Uganda.
Louis A. Picard; Ezzeddine Moudoud
This article examines the issue of democratic governance in Guinea-Conakry and the impact that international donors had on the political debate in the last years of the Conteacute regime. Our contention here is that there was and continues to be an evolving pluralism and embryo group of self-defined civil society organisations in both urban and rural Guinea but as a result of the December 2008 military coup opportunities have been lost in the promotion of democratic governance and more pluralistic group dynamics in Guinea. Support for indigenous (and self-defined) civil society groups, including the development of political parties by the international community, is essential to the return to institutionalised governance.
Brian J. Hesse
'Somalia' is often portrayed as the quintessential ungovernable, failed state - with pirates, terrorists and humanitarian crises as a consequence. This article tells how Somalis in Somaliland and Puntland today have realised a degree of successful governance in the Horn of Africa.
Emmanuel Anyefru
Historically it is not strange that the Anglophone elites in Cameroon took their case to the international community, since this was a strategy that they employed during the British colonial period. A number of petitions and constant visits were made to the United Nations (UN) by Anglophone elites concerning British neglect of their territory. These petitions were made in the form of presentations before the United Nations in New York or whenever there was a visiting UN mission to the trust territory. Nonetheless, since the early 1990s, the pattern of petitions has changed drastically. Petitions against the new state are different from those earlier petitions against colonialism. The aim of the petitions against the new state has been to draw the attention of the UN and the international community to the injustices inflicted upon minority English-speaking Cameroonians by the ruling government. The Anglophone elites believe that, by making their plight known to the international community, the latter might intervene to restore the statehood of Southern Cameroons.


2009 | 27 - 4 : Varia
Voir la revue : Taylor & Francis Group
Voir la revue : IngentaConnect
Trouver cette revue en bibliothèque : SUDOC