Mo Ibrahim: ‘Africa Deserves Better Governance’

CHALLENGE: Mo Ibrahim has called on African governments to give its citizens the leadership they deserve



Too many African governments have failed to improve the way they manage their countries, according to a new report published today (Oct 5).

Data from the annual Ibrahim Index of African Governance shows that over the past four years (2011/14), progress has stalled.

It also found that 21 of Africa’s 54 countries have a weakened performance compared to previous years.

The average score for overall governance was 50.1 – a slight improvement (+0.2) since the 2011 average.

Mo Ibrahim, chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation which compiles the leading publication, said: “While Africans overall are certainly healthier and live in more democratic societies than 15 years ago, the 2015 IIAG shows that recent progress in other key areas on the continent has either stalled or reversed, and that some key countries seem to be faltering.”

The report is the most comprehensive collection of data on African governance using material from 33 independent African and global data institutions.

Ibrahim added: “This is a warning sign for all of us. Only shared and sustained improvements across all areas of governance will deliver the future that Africans deserve and demand.”

Published annually, the IIAG provides a comprehensive assessment of every country on the continent using 93 indicators across the following four categories: safety & rule of law, participation & human rights, sustainable economic opportunity and human development.

During the period 2011/14, the African average overall governance score in the IIAG increased only slightly by +0.2 points to 50.1 (out of 100.0).

Even five of Africa’s top-performing countries have deteriorated since 2011.

The foundation warned that current top three countries – Mauritius, Cabo Verde and Botswana – all show a decline in at least two of the four components over the last four years, which calls into question whether they will continue to dominate the rankings in future.

Only six countries – Côte d’Ivoire, Morocco, Rwanda, Senegal, Somalia and Zimbabwe – have registered an improvement.

The worst performing countries were Central African Republic (24.9), South Sudan (19.9) and Somalia (8.5) .
South Sudan, Africa’s newest recognised nations, and Central African Republic both registered the most extreme deteriorations, alongside Mali.

At regional level, Southern Africa remains the best performing region, with an average score of 58.9, followed by West Africa (52.4), North Africa (51.2) and East Africa (44.3).

Central Africa is the lowest ranking region with an average score of 40.9, and is the only region to have deteriorated since 2011.

The marginal improvement in overall governance at the continental level is underpinned by positive performances in two categories, Human Development (+1.2) and Participation & Human Rights (+0.7).

Both Sustainable Economic Opportunity (-0.7) and Safety & Rule of Law (-0.3) has slipped.

The Mo Ibrahim Foundation was established in 2006 with a focus on the critical importance of leadership and governance in Africa.

By providing tools to support progress in leadership and governance, the foundation aims to promote meaningful change on the continent.

Ibrahim, a Sudanese-born billionaire, made his fortune in the communications technology business.

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