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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The collapse and the reconstruction of the African State: scattered notes
Author:Ibrahim, JibrinISNI
Periodical:L'Afrique politique
Geographic term:Nigeria
Subjects:political systems
State collapse
civil service
Abstract:Recent writings on the African State in general, and the Nigerian State in particular, have been pessimistic. The main cause of the crisis of the State in Nigeria is the collapse of the public administration. Under colonization, its objectives were clearly defined and limited to the creation of an environment of order and justice favourable to the interests of the British crown. Since independence, the Nigerian State has been characterized by its many coups d'état, financial scandals, corruption, etc., involving high-ranking civil servants and politicians. The administration is now in such a state of decomposition that it is incapable of rendering the slightest service to the population. The various reforms undertaken in the framework of the structural adjustment plans to achieve a level of good governance have not improved its performance on the political level (democracy, decentralization) or on that of the economy (liberalization), for want of control by leaders who often lack legitimacy and are accountable to nobody. Can the Nigerian State be reconstituted, given its current level of decomposition? The author points to the example of Ghana, where the restoration of the State, especially on the local level through the much acclaimed decentralization programme started by President Jerry Rawlings in 1988, appears to be a success. Bibliogr., notes, sum. in English and French (p. 10-11).