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Corruption in Ghana: Above the din of official protestation, citizens’ voices are being heard

Sometimes you complete a study, release the results, and then … listen to the resounding silence.

Other times your results hit a nerve – and the nerve tries to hit back, attacking everything from your findings to your methodology to the integrity of your intentions.

Then there are occasions – still too rare – when the initial emotional backlash is followed by a willingness to consider the possibility that the voices of everyday citizens might actually be worth hearing and acting on.


AD40: Zimbabwe seen headed in the wrong direction, but president's leadership approval steady

Most Zimbabweans express discontent with the overall direction of their country, deteriorating economic conditions, rising corruption, and the performance of their elected leaders – except for President Robert Mugabe.

According to the latest Afrobarometer survey, popular assessments of the country’s direction and of how members of Parliament (MPs) and local government councillors are doing their jobs are considerably more negative than in 2012, but a majority of Zimbabweans continue to approve of the president’s performance.


AD37: Is Kenya's anti-terrorist crackdown exacerbating drivers of violent extremism?

Kenya has seen a dramatic rise in violent extremism: Between 1970 and 2007, the country experienced 190 terrorist attacks, an average of five per year; since 2008, the average has escalated to 47 attacks a year. The overwhelming majority of these incidents have been attributed to Al-Shabaab. Originating in Somalia in 2005, the group has since regionalized its operations and established an active presence in Kenya, where it has successfully recruited and radicalized Kenyan nationals and carried out numerous attacks on a variety of local targets (Botha, 2014).


WP158: Who’s asking? Interviewer coethnicity effects in African survey data

Face-to-face interviews constitute a social interaction between interviewer and respondent, yet research employing African survey data typically fails to account for the effect of shared ethnicity on survey responses. We find that respondents give systematically different answers to coethnic and non-coethnic interviewers across surveys in 14 African countries, but with significant variation in the degree of bias across question types and countries, with the largest effects for explicitly ethnic questions and in countries where ethnicity is salient.


BP156: Au Niger, le soutien est fort mais pas unanime pour l’adoption de la sharia dans la Constitution

This publication is only available in French

Les questions religieuses connaissent un regain d’intérêt dans les espaces publics de nos pays. Au Niger, elles sont devenues préoccupantes en raison des évènements récents qui ont marqué notre sous-région (occupation du Nord Mali par de groupes djihadistes, Boko Haram). C’est pourquoi elles sont à l’agenda des gouvernements qui déploient beaucoup d’efforts pour asseoir les bases de la sécurité collective de leurs pays.


AD33: Les Béninois évaluent les députés de l’Assemblée Nationale et leurs demandent de contrôler les actions du gouvernement

La bonne nouvelle: La majorité des Béninois sont satisfaits de la performance des députés des législatures précédentes à l’Assemblée Nationale.

La mauvaise nouvelle: En comparaison avec 2011, les évaluations des citoyens concernant la performance et la fiabilité des députes des précédentes législatures ont chutés. La confiance des Béninois à l’endroit de leurs députés a diminué, et la proportion de ceux qui trouvent que « tous » ou « la plupart » des députés sont impliqués dans les affaires de corruption a connu une hausse drastique.


Performance et prérogatives des députés de l’Assemblée Nationale au Bénin: Les citoyens donnent de la voix

Selon la plus récente enquête d’Afrobaromètre, la majorité des Béninois apprécient la performance de leurs députés à l’Assemblée Nationale et leurs demandent de contrôler les actions du gouvernement et de décider des lois pour le pays. Une des lois qui défraye la chronique reste celle du projet de loi sur la révision de la constitution.


Large majority of Africans support term limits; leaders’ efforts to extend their tenure run contrary to citizens’ wishes

Despite increasing attacks from African leaders seeking to extend their tenure, presidential term limits enjoy the solid backing of a large majority of African citizens, a new Afrobarometer analysis shows.

Based on survey responses of more than 51,600 citizens in 34 countries, support for limiting presidential mandates to a maximum of two is the majority view in every country but one (Algeria).


AD30: African publics strongly support term limits, resist leaders’ efforts to extend their tenure

At the end of the 20th century, many African countries adopted presidential term limits aspart of a broader set of constitutional rules that accompanied the transition from personal and authoritarian rule to pluralistic modes of governance. While term limits were widely embraced by the larger African public, these rules have in recent years come under increasing attack from incumbent presidents seeking to extend their tenures.


Zimbabwe is going in the wrong direction; but whilst public approval of MPs and councillors’ performance tumbles, approval of President Mugabe’s leadership remains steady

Despite most Zimbabweans expressing discontent with the overall direction of the country, in terms of its deteriorating economic performance as well as rising corruption, the majority still approve of President Robert Mugabe’s leadership performance. His approval rating has only decreased slightly since it was last measured in 2012.. This persistent positive evaluation of the president stands in stark contrast to the growing opinion that Zimbabwe, as a country, is headed in the wrong direction.


PP19: Ghana's oil revenue management: Convergence of popular opinion, the law, and practice

Ghana’s efforts to explore and develop the country’s oil potential, spearheaded by the Ghana National Petroleum Company (GNPC), culminated in the 2007 discovery of oil in commercial quantities offshore at Cape Three Points in the Western region. Three years later, production commenced at the Jubilee Field.


Zambians’ trust in the judiciary still high but begins to decline, legitimacy also suffers

The percentage of Zambian citizens who recognize the legitimacy of the courts of law has declined from 79% in 2012 to 68% in 2014. The most recent Afrobarometer survey found that the percentage of Zambians who do not trust the judiciary  has also declined from 62% in 2012 to 59% in 2014.


A majority of Africans say national economic conditions are bad

New findings from Afrobarometer, based on surveys conducted in an unprecedented 34 African countries between October 2011 and June 2013, reveal widespread dissatisfaction with current economic conditions despite a decade of strong growth.

Annual GDP growth on the continent averaged 4.8% over the past decade (2002-11)1, prompting The Economist magazine to tag Africa as ‘The Hopeful Continent’, and an abundance of upbeat macroeconomic statistics has made Africa a new darling of portfolio investors.


AD23: Ghana’s decentralization: Locally centralized decision making ill serves its public

Metropolitan, municipal, and district assemblies (MMDAs), along with complementary sub-structures, are the major features of Ghana’s decentralized local government system initiated in the early 1990s. The core functions of MMDAs, as set out in the 1993 Local Government Act (Act 462), include ensuring the overall development of the district by a) preparing district development plans and budgets, b) initiating programs for the development of basic infrastructure, and c) providing municipal works and services in their jurisdictions.


Zimbabweans pessimistic about economy and direction of the country

More than six in ten (63%) adult Zimbabweans think that the country is heading in the wrong direction, according to the most recent Afrobarometer survey (November 2014). This pessimistic outlook is shared across demographic groups of gender, age, place of residence (POR) and province though the depth of opinion differs. For example, while nearly three quarters of urban dwellers (73%) expressed pessimism, less than six in ten of their rural dwellers (58%) share this view and more males (67%) than females (60%) say the country is going the wrong way.


Zimbabweans largely ignorant of the 2013 Constitution

More than three quarters of Zimbabweans do not know about the Constitution enacted in May 2013 to replace the 33-year-old Lancaster House Charter. The new supreme law was overwhelmingly and peacefully approved in a referendum in March 2013 in which half of the adult population turned out to vote. Close to one and half years after this historic event, the latest Afro barometer survey in Zimbabwe reveals that more than three quarters of the country’s citizens (78%) either know nothing or very little about their national constitution.


Tanzanians express dissatisfaction with current living conditions, perceive declining economic conditions

Despite annual economic growth rates averaging of 7%, a majority of Tanzanians say their current living conditions are bad, according to the 2014 Afrobarometer survey.

Negative public perceptions of the country’s economic condition are also significantly higher than a decade ago.


Zambians disapprove of non-democratic means of governance

A majority of Zambians do not approve of non-democratic means of governance, according to the most recent Afrobarometer survey.

Results from the survey, which was conducted in October 2014, shows that most Zambians disapprove of undemocratic alternatives such as one-party rule and one-man rule.

The data is being released in view of the recent (January 2015) presidential elections that showed regional polarisation in voting patterns which have the potential to slow down the democratic process. It demonstrates that Zambians, in general, have faith in Zambia’s democracy.