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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Francophone Africa and security sector transformation: plus ša change ...
Author:N'Diaye, BoubacarISNI
Periodical:African security
Geographic terms:French-speaking Africa
Subjects:national security
defence policy
Abstract:This article investigates why Francophone Africa, by and large, has 'missed the boat' of security sector transformation. It examines the factors that have contributed to the dearth of much-needed harmonization between the democratization of political systems in African States since the 1990s and the governance of their security sectors. It argues that in nearly all aspects of security sector management, Francophone African States remained prisoners of French African security policies many facets of which did not conform to sound security sector governance principles or convey these to African (political or military) leaders. The evidence indicates that Francophone Africa's security establishments, the armies in particular, were conceived as overseas appendices and instruments of French security policies both before and after the adjustments made necessary by the major changes in the 1990s. Throughout, unsavoury relations cultivated with Francophone elites were used to legitimize and perpetuate this set up. Ultimately African leaders are responsible for the absence of serious security sector transformation. However, this legacy of rampant praetorianism, culture of dependence on and modelling France, the absence of a tradition of (institutionalized) civilian supremacy, democratic accountability, and transparency help explain why genuine security sector transformation has eluded nearly all Francophone African States. Recommendations are proffered to seize the opportunity of the recent change of French political personnel and rhetoric about Africa to finally engage in genuine security sector transformation. Notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]