Africa has become ‘less secure and democratic’ in the last decade, according to report | overall development

Africa is less safe, secure and democratic than it was a decade ago, and insecurity is holding back progress in health, education and economic opportunity, according to an assessment of the continent.

He Ibrahim Index of African Governancewhich examines how well governments have delivered on policies and services, including safety, health, education, rights and democratic participation, said Covid had contributed to the stagnation of progress over the past three years.

Mo Ibrahim, a Sudanese-born entrepreneur who launched the index in 2007, said economic opportunity and human development had improved “quite a bit” in Africa over the past 10 years. “But on the other hand, we see other forces that push us back. The security of our people is deteriorating,” he said.

Ibrahim said he was concerned that the climate crisis would lead to more conflicts over resources, as has already been seen in parts of Nigeria, Darfur and the saheland concerned about the impact of the war in Ukraine on development indicators across the continent.

Worsening governance

“[The Ukraine war] it is a disaster for us; It is affecting our food prices, it is affecting our fuel prices. Its a big problem. We have been unfortunate because of a series of shocks one after another, Covid-19, which was an impact not only from a health point of view but also an economic one, and we can see a developing debt crisis in many African countries.”

According to the index, published on Wednesday, security, the rule of law and human rights have deteriorated in more than 30 countries. The report warned that democratic freedoms were being curtailed, citing examples of repression and attacks on protesters calling for an end to police brutality in Nigeria and regime change in sudan. Protests that have been met with excessive force by security services have been on the rise since 2016.

The index found that better infrastructure and internet and telephone connectivity had improved economic opportunities in Africa since 2012. Health services for children and pregnant women, as well as disease control, had improved, as had education. There was evidence of better resources and greater efforts to ensure that more children enroll and complete their schooling, although progress was observed. slowed down by covid locks

Nigerian police fire tear gas during clashes in Abuja, October 2020, following protests against police brutality.
Nigerian police fire tear gas during clashes in Abuja, October 2020, following protests against police brutality. Photograph: Kola Sulaimon/AFP/Getty Images

Mauritius, Seychelles and Tunisia were found to have the most effective governments, while South Sudan, Guinea-Bissau and Somalia had the worst.

South Sudan suffered from a lack of economic opportunity, while nearly three quarters of its population faced hungerthe found index.

Libya, which has experienced the biggest deterioration in governance in the past decade due to years of civil war, had some of the worst health, education and social welfare services on the continent.

major improvements

However, the biggest improvements were seen in The Gambia and Seychelles, with the report highlighting improvements in democratic participation, contrary to the continental trend, with fairer elections and greater freedom of assembly and space for civil society to work.

Murithi Mutiga, Africa program director at Crisis Group, said: “The continent is experiencing a triple shock that is almost unprecedented. Covid-19 and its aftermath, a generational climate crisis and now the war in Ukraine, which has resulted in economic pain in a continent already vulnerable and only recovering from the pandemic. It is critical to ensure that intensive efforts are made to limit the economic fallout.”

Mutiga noted that eight of the 10 most peaceful countries also had the most effective governments and the least corruption.

“In countries where militias have proliferated, they have filled a governance vacuum, often left by elites in capitals who are not accountable to rural populations,” he said.

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