Unfortunately many African economies continue to underperform the competition by a wide margin because of inappropriate policy decisions, and overall poor governance. Virtually all of the things we would like to blame for underdevelopment in Africa are related to these two factors. With the ongoing decline in commodity prices, the ability of African countries to remain competitive in line with the Africa rising euphoria will be tested. Indeed economic growth rates have slowed significantly across the continent even among countries that were leading Africa and the world in economic growth. Some of these countries include Nigeria, Ghana and Botswana where commodity prices have turned unfavorable. Looking closely at governance and to put a handle on the matter we identify four conditions for good governance. 1. provide competitive market structures in communities to ensure inclusive growth that is strong and enduring. 2. ensure evidence-based decision making processes, 3. use institutions and transparency in policy implementation and 4. participate in mechanisms that promote feedback from the citizenry. If Africa is indeed the world's next frontier, then the seeming stall in reforms and good governance must be immediately addressed. Mo Ibrahim, Chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, has said recently that : â€œWhile Africans overall are certainly healthier and live in more democratic societies than 15 years ago, the 2015 Ibrahim Index of African governance (IIAG) shows that recent progress in many key areas on the continent has either stalled or reversed, and that some key countries seem to be faltering. As Mo Ibrahim has said, only shared and sustained improvements across all areas of governance will deliver the future that Africans deserve and demand. It is important to note that it is the nature of governance that determines whether people deploy their talents and energy in pursuit of innovation, production, and job creation, or in rent seeking and actions of corruption. For example, successful economies require a reasonably independent central bank, that does not get involved into short term politics. Such economies also have regulatory agencies that can pursue policies in accordance with broad goals that open up competition open to all. When credit decisions, public procurement, construction contracts, and price determination reflect only short-term and purely political goals, good economic performance becomes impossible. As I always say and insist on, good governance must be driven by the people and so to achieve it, our communities where the people reside must be given the social, political and infrastructural enablement to contribute to national economic success and therefore to shared prosperity. I am Magnus Kpakol and that's my view.
Posted: Oct 20th, 2015 @ 02:11:38 AM