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Safety and rule of law marred Africa's progress in governance: report

Mo Ibrahim Index

The Ivory Coast, Togo, Zimbabwe, Liberia and Rwanda are reported to have improved in governance among 37 African countries since 2006 contributing to a little progress by the continent.

However, 33 African countries recorded a negative trend over the decade in Safety and Rule of Law which generally contributed to the slow governance progress. 15 out of that number declined substantially since 2006.

These findings make up the 2016 Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG) launched in London on Monday by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation highlighting a decade’s most comprehensive analysis of data assessing each of Africa’s 54 countries.

Chaired by Sudanese-British mobile communication entrepreneur and billionaire Mo Ibrahim, the foundation released the Index which for the first time included a Public Attitude Survey data from Afrobarometer capturing perceptions of governance.

“As our Index reveals, the decline in safety and rule of law is the biggest issue facing the continent today. Sound governance and wise leadership are fundamental to tackling this challenge, sustaining recent progress and ensuring that Africa’s future is bright,” Mo Ibrahim said at the launch.

Niger, Rwanda, Ivory Coast, Togo and Kenya progressed largely in Business Environment over the decade while two-thirds of the countries on the continent, representing 67% of the African population, have shown deterioration in Freedom of Expression.

On the issue of corruption and bureaucracy, there was a decline over the last decade in 33 countries with 24 of them falling to the worst ever score in 2015.

The most improved indicator out of the 95 of the Index is Digital and IT Infrastructure while the lowest is Diversification.

“40% of Africans live in a country which has registered deterioration in Electricity Infrastructure over the decade, with over half of Africa’s economy affected by this issue,” the Index indicated.

Progress was recorded in Human Development and Participation & Human Rights. Sustainable Economic Opportunity also registered an improvement, but at a slower pace.

Also, poverty and child mortality reduced progressively over the 10-year period, the Index outlined.

Watch Africanews’ live coverage of the launch below.