Why democracy is failing in Africa — Don

Professor Steve Iyayi, a public administration expert, has attributed the failure of democracy in Africa to poor leadership and not the democratic system itself.

He emphasised that leaders have failed to prioritise the people’s needs and entrench good governance, leading to mismanaged resources, poverty, and lack of amenities.

“Democratic governance has therefore not really addressed the needs of the society and the people in this region of the world. The reason is not that democracy as a system of government is not suitable to our society but essentially due to the fault of the operators.

“Starting from the choice of leaders and representatives in elections, the people are not allowed to have their way. Elections are routinely manipulated such that in the end their participation in the processes is not felt. On the socio- economic front, the region has mismanaged its resources with attendant deepening poverty and gross shortages of amenities for a good living standard,” he said.

Iyayi stressed that leaders must make the people the center of their programmes and policies, prioritise transparency and accountability, and create an environment for citizens to participate in governance.

He identified good leadership as the key to unlocking dividends of democracy and achieving growth and development.

The professor also noted that military interventions in African countries have often been motivated by self-interest, perpetuating the cycle of poor governance.

He urged leaders to learn from past mistakes and prioritise the welfare of their citizens.



Tribune Online