African Governance Report III - 2013

Elections and the Management of Diversity

image of African Governance Report III - 2013
This report is the most comprehensive report on governance in Africa, assesses and monitors the progress African countries are making on governance, identifies capacity gaps in governance institutions and proposes polices and strategic interventions aimed at promoting good governance on the continent. It focuses on political and economic governance, development of the private sector and corporate governance, checks and balances in political power, institutional effectiveness and accountability of the executive, human rights and the rule of law, corruption and institutional capacity building. The theme of this third edition of the report revolves around elections in Africa becoming a significant tool for political change and genuine democratization.

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Political architecture: State-building and diversity

African countries are plural and diverse societies. The continent’s political geography has been shaped by its history, and shows diverse groups, communities, regions and societies that were not necessarily coterminous, forcibly merged together, accentuating the plurality of Africa’s social formations. Constructed on an authoritarian political infrastructure, the colonial era’s model of governance had implications for state–society relations, the management of diversity and the electoral process. This background heavily influenced the character of the immediate post-colonial state and governance, leading to a crisis of identity and disempowerment, of which traces remain today.

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