Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Video: Tribalism & western-style democracy in Africa

One of Africa's famous scholars Calestous Juma has claimed that tribalism is damaging the march to democracy across Africa.

In a recent article the Harvard University professor wrote of his fears that such tensions worsen at election time, for example in his native Kenya, because African political parties appeal to their electorate on the basis of tribe rather than by the appeal of their ideas.

But some African presidents, including Robert Mugabe who'll face election this year and Rwanda's Paul Kagame have argued that western-style democracy can make tribalism worse, and that Africa must develop its own style of governance.

Other researchers, such as Ngala Killian of the British Institute in East Africa accuse Professor Juma of imposing western style definitions onto African societies.

They say the term tribe is insulting and would never be used for Europeans or Americans so it shouldn't be used for Africans.

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