List Of Democratic Countries In Africa and facts about them. There are numerous countries in Africa no doubt, but not all are democratic. In a recent report published by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), 50 African countries were considered (with the exception of South Sudan, Seychelles, Somalia, and Sao Tome and Principe), and the state of democracy in the continent was measured.
While a country like Mauritius was branded “Full Democracy” (the only one in the country, even believed to be more democratic than the duo of USA and France), several others fall into the “flawed democracy” and “hybrid democracy” categories.
Of course, several other countries in Africa were placed in the “authoritarian regime” category. It should be noted that while it is not too easy determining what democracy truly is, the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Democracy Index has been embraced for its provision of an overview of the state of democracy in the world.
The index is based on five sets of criteria:
- Electoral process and pluralism
- Civil liberties
- the functioning of government
- Political participation
- Political culture
According to the study, here are the Democratic countries in Africa:
List Of Democratic Countries In Africa
- Mauritius (Regarded as the only truly democratic country in Africa)
- Botswana (flawed democracy)
- Cabo Verde (flawed democracy)
- South Africa (flawed democracy)
- Tunisia (flawed democracy)
- Ghana (flawed democracy)
- Lesotho (flawed democracy)
- Namibia (flawed democracy)
- Senegal (hybrid democracy)
- Madagascar (hybrid democracy)
- Malawi (hybrid democracy)
- Liberia (hybrid democracy)
- Kenya (hybrid democracy)
- Tanzania (hybrid democracy)
- Morocco (hybrid democracy)
- Benin (hybrid democracy)
- Zambia (hybrid democracy)
- Uganda (hybrid democracy)
- Mali (hybrid democracy)
- Sierra Leone (hybrid democracy)
- Gambia (hybrid democracy)
- Nigeria (hybrid democracy)
- Côte d’Ivoire (hybrid democracy)
- Burkina Faso (hybrid democracy)
- Algeria (hybrid democracy)
Having highlighted the democratic countries in Africa, let us explore the index used to determine the rankings of the list of democratic countries in Africa:
- Electoral Process and Pluralism:
It is believed that a democratic country is one that will hold regular elections where citizens are given the chance to elect their representatives. Leaders should not be forced on the majority, but being democratic means they have a say as far as the selection of leaders is concerned, and they can always choose the persons they believed will promote their interests.
Additionally, it is expected that there be more than one political party in the country, so the majority will always have a wide array of options, and won’t just be stuck to one party.
Unfortunately, it appears things are not going smoothly in Africa as regards these (currently), as the report made it known that up to 24 African countries recorded a decline in their performance – which was mainly as a result of the deterioration of the electoral process and political pluralism in many nations in recent times.
One of the African nations that witnessed the largest drop in Benin. The nation moved from the 81st world rank to the 97th. In case you are wondering what brought about this, it is simply as a result of the recent legislative elections held without opposition participation. The incident brought about violence in the Benin Republic (talking about pluralism).
It should also be added that another African country that fell significantly is Senegal. Currently, the West African country, which used to be in the category of “flawed democracies”, is now ranked 82nd in the world (and is now in the category of “hybrid” democracies).
- Functioning of Government
It is expedient that the government in a democratic society is functioning adequately well, as there should be an atmosphere that will replace an unimpressive government (and they will be forced to sit tight since they will be held accountable for their actions).
There is a good reason for having a government that every citizen of the country submits to. The government is meant to embark on activities that would ensure progress in the society (which can easily come up if driven by competent individuals)
One of the major reasons why many African countries were ranked low is because of how funny the activities of their government is. The major culprit is corruption, which keeps hindering much African government from engaging in the right things that would have to ensure growth and development in Africa.
- Political Participation
In a democratic setting, everyone, irrespective of gender (as far as they are above age 18), can join a political party, vote and be voted for. Politics should not be left to just a very privileged few – but everyone should have access to the political field, and be allowed to play in whichever role they desire.
Some African countries are still restricting political participation, and it should not be encouraged for anything. Everyone with ideas on how to make things work should be allowed (given access) to play a role and contribute their own quota to the growth of the society.
- Political Culture
A democratic society has its own political culture. As expected, this ought to ensure growth and development in society. The political culture has to do with the political system and atmosphere of the society, built via various political activities.
- Civil Liberties
There must be freedom of speech and association. Citizens must have the liberty to live – as far as their activities aren’t causing harm to others. Civil liberties must be keenly adhered to in African societies before they can become prominent as far as the ranking of democratic countries is concerned. In authoritarian societies, this is barely seen, as liberties are taken away from the people by the government, and they are restricted from engaging in several activities
Closing On The Democratic Countries In Africa
In conclusion, from the study, it became known that democracy declined in Africa, most especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Nevertheless, it is necessary to add that some African countries witnessed an improvement, such as Sudan, that moved up to 157th place in the world but remain in the “authoritarian” category.
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