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Safety, Rule of Law drive Namibia’s growing positive governance ranking

Safety, Rule of Law drive Namibia’s growing positive governance ranking

Namibia scored 71.2 out of 100 in Overall Governance, ranking 5th out of 54 in Africa in the latest Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance released this week. Namibia’s score is significantly higher than both the continental average of 50.8 and the regional average of 58.6.

According to the index launched on Monday, Namibia’s Overall Governance progress over the past decade is driven by all of the four categories: Safety and Rule of Law (being the best performing category), Participation and Human Rights, Sustainable Economic Opportunity and Human Development.

The Index revealed that the continent’s Overall Governance trajectory remains positive on average, but in recent years has moved at a slower pace.

Mo Ibrahim, Chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, said, “As the index shows us, overall governance in Africa is improving. This is good news. However, the slowing and in some cases even reversing trends in a large number of countries, and in some key dimensions of governance, mean that we must be vigilant. Without vigilance and sustained efforts, the progress of recent years could be in danger of vanishing.”

The index compilers stated that many countries struggle to build on recent progress or to reverse negative trends, and as concerns emerge in some key sectors, the Mo Ibrahim Foundation said it is calling for vigilance on the continent’s future.

The eleventh edition of the Index looks at both country and indicator trends over the last five years (2012-2016), within the context of the last decade (2007-2016). By evaluating more recent progress on governance alongside long-term performance, the 2017 Index provides the most nuanced assessment to date of the evolution and direction that countries, regions and specific dimensions of governance are taking.

Over the last ten years, 40 African countries have improved in Overall Governance. In the last five years, 18 of these, a third of the continent’s countries and home to 58% of African citizens, including Cote d’Ivoire, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria and Senegal, have even managed to accelerate their progress. In 2016, the continent achieved its highest Overall Governance score to date 50.8 out of 100, according to the Foundation.

However, over the same period, Africa’s annual average rate of improvement in Overall Governance has slowed. Of the 40 countries improving in Overall Governance during the last decade, more than half have either done so at a slower pace in the last five years (i.e. Rwanda and Ethiopia) or show decline (i.e. Mauritius, Cameroon and Angola). Furthermore, eight of the 12 countries registering decline in Overall Governance over the past decade are showing no signs of turning things around, with scores decreasing at an even faster rate over the second half of the decade. This group includes Botswana, Ghana, Libya and Mozambique.

Meanwhile according to the index Participation and Human Rights is the only category picking up speed in the last five years, with the greatest number of countries (17) improving at an accelerated rate across all four categories.

Among other variables, the Index shows that Namibia achieves its highest category score in Safety & Rule of Law (78.1), and its lowest category score in Sustainable Economic Opportunity (64.2).

Namibia achieves its highest sub-category score in National Security (99.8), and its lowest sub-category score in Accountability (60.3), and the Rural Sector (60.3).


About The Author

Musa Carter

Musa Carter is a long-standing freelance contributor to the editorial team and also an active reporter. He gathers and verifies factual information regarding stories through interviews, observation and research. For the digital Economist, he promotes targeted content through various social networking sites such as the Economist facebook page (/Nameconomist/) and Twitter.