Democratic Transition in Anglophone West Africa by Jibrin Ibrahim

By Jibrin Ibrahim

Ibrahim deals a comparative research of the democratic transitions within the Anglophone nations of West Africa, picking out nearby developments and discreet elements. He argues that democracy is creeping up the time table, as a result of a detremined fight for human rights and since democracy has been denied to the folk for thus lengthy. He identifies a few universal matters around the sector: the increase of a militarised secular nation; an important elevate in public corruption; the primitive accumulation of capital; an excessive conflict to deepen democracy among civil society and the kingdom; the appropriation of gender poltiics through the country in the course of the place of work of the 'first ladies'; and the turning out to be dissidence among elections and political selection. The examine additionally addresses what will be thought of a suitable local version in Ghana, and an unacceptable instance in Liberia.

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2 of 1984 allowed the Chief 30 of General Staff to detain citizens for extended periods without charging them in court. The decree suspended the important instrument of Habeas Corpus that citizens could use to compel the state to produce detainees in court. The Nigerian legal system has continued in a fairly combative mood. In 1984, the whole legal profession rose against the suspension of due process and systematisation of military tribunals to ‘persecute’ rather than ‘prosecute’ politicians. They tried, even if with limited success, to resist the authoritarian excesses of the Babangida regime.

Two months before the March 1996 elections were to take place, a coup occurred under the leadership of Strasser who seemed very reluctant to allow a popular vote. Then Captain Strasser was replaced at the apex of the state by Julius Bio, in a palace coup. Bio argued that Strasser was trying to perpetuate his rule. Bio himself started procrastinating on the issue of democracy, on the grounds that the war would not allow free and fair elections. He was however forced to hold the elections in 1996 and a civilian government under Tejan Kabbah assumed office.

Enormous powers, hitherto held by the regions or the cabinet, have been allocated to the President or the Governor in the 1979 and 1999 Constitutions. With the reversal of Nigeria’s federal tradition, the guarantee that was used to help reduce the fears of ethno-regional domination was lost. Under the Sani Abacha regime, Nigeria moved fully into the terrain of tyranny and the impact of militarism on the character of the state was extensively expressed. Numerous parallel security agencies were established to terrorise Nigerians into accepting Abacha’s self-succession plans.

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