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West Africa’s coup d’états: Impacts and Implications

By Blog, Conflict, CoupNo Comments

In August 2020, Mali’s democratic government was overthrown by the military. A second coup, in May the following year, saw Colonel Assimi Goïta take full control of the transitional authority. But the elongated transitional period proposed raised concern among democracy watchers in the region. Concerns that have only grown following coup d’états in Guinea, Burkina Faso and the apparent attempt by security forces to oust the elected government of Guinea-Bissau in early 2022. This series of articles offers some reflections on the impacts and implications of these events at both domestic and regional levels.

The first piece, by Idayat Hassan, highlights how coups in the region cannot be disconnected from the failure of governance which continue to be beset by an inability to address insecurity, tackle corruption or deliver comprehensive socio-economic benefits to their citizens. Gilles Olakounlé Yabi asks what more the Economic Community of West African States could be doing to proactively reduce the risk of military interventions in politics in the region. He argues that for the regional body to be a more effective defender of democracy, it must support member states to become more transparent and accountable to their citizens.

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By Blog, Conflict, News, PublicationsNo Comments



The Centre for Democracy and development is pleased to join the Africa Union and its
esteemed governments, as well as other stakeholders in commemorating this year’s African
Union Anti-corruption Day, slated for 11th July 2022. The theme “Strategies and Mechanisms
for the Transparent Management of Covid-19 Funds” is not only apt, but very important at
this time as it seeks to draw global and continental attention to the need to address a
disturbing corruption problem associated with Covid-19 pandemic which severely tasked
many economies and brought social and even political dislocations in Africa.
CDD commends all African countries that have signed and ratified the African Union
Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC) which was adopted in
Maputo, Mozambique on 11 July 2003 and came into force in 2006. CDD also commends the
countries that have enacted laws and created independent anti-corruption agencies to tackle

Corruption is still an unnerving problem in Africa and indeed the major cause of
underdevelopment. CDD urges all states to work towards complying with the provisions of
the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC) and
indeed other similar multilateral instruments such as the UNCAC as well as relevant
international resolutions. There is also an urgent need for member states to collectively take
steps to diligently implement the recommendations of the Mbeki report on Illicit financial
flows which found that the African continent suffers an annual loss of over $50 billion as of
2015 through illicit financial flows (IFFs). That figure has since risen to over $80 billion. It is
pertinent to note that through corruption and mismanagement, some of the Covid-19 funds in
Africa may have become a source of illicit financial flows to countries in the North.

It also remains concerning that national and continental transparency initiative and efforts to
stem the unbridled illicit financial flows from Africa to the Northern hemisphere has been
embroiled in complex international politics. While noting that the problem of illicit financial
flows cannot be solved post-haste, Africa must continue to stand together and push for a
world order that discourages resource and trade price manipulation structured to fritter
resources from Africa and keep the continent perpetually undeveloped. Corruption and illicit
financial flows are twin evils which continue to constrain Africa’s progress and development.
Regrettably, the utilization of Covid-19 funds has also become a major source of Africa’s
corruption conundrum.

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Le Mali, la France et nous

By Blog, Conflict, Coup, Politics, PublicationsNo Comments

Depuis quelques mois, un nombre croissant d’organisations de la société civile et de classes
politiques et intellectuelles africaines manifestent fréquemment leur désapprobation des
politiques de la France dans ses anciennes colonies, singulièrement le Mali qui, depuis une
décennie, est en proie à une menace terroriste et irrédentiste existentielle.
Cet article présente un examen de la toile de fond, des circonstances, causes, dynamiques, et
enjeux de l’acrimonieuse épreuve de force qui oppose le Mali et la France depuis Mai de l’an
dernier lorsque leurs relations se dégradèrent brusquement. Il est suggéré que, tout compte fait,
les promoteurs de la « démocratie et du développement » en Afrique se doivent d’accorder le
bénéfice du doute aux dirigeant de la Transition dont la décision de secouer le statu quo des
relations sécuritaires avec la France semblent avoir secoué dans ses fondations, et est susceptible
de saborder, la Françafrique. Cependant, cette solidarité doit s’accompagner d’une vigilance
méticuleuse afin que la Transition aboutisse à un État sécurisé, stable et véritablement en voie de

Mali, France, and Us

By Conflict, Coup, PoliticsNo Comments

In recent months, a growing number of civil society organizations and African political and intellectual classes have frequently expressed their disapproval of France’s policies in its former
colonies, particularly Mali which, for a decade, has been in the grip of an existential terrorist and
irredentist threat. This article presents an examination of the backdrop, circumstances, causes,
dynamics of, and stakes in the acrimonious showdown that has pitted Mali and France against
each other since May last year when their relationship suddenly deteriorated. It is suggested that,
on balance, the advocates of “democracy and development” in Africa should give the benefit of
the doubt to the leaders of the Transition, whose decision to shake up the status quo of security
relations with France seems have shaken to its foundations, and is likely to scuttle, Françafrique.
However, this solidarity must be accompanied by meticulous vigilance so that the Transition
results in a secure, stable state that is truly on the way to democratization.

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