John Campbell

Africa in Transition

Campbell tracks political and security developments across sub-Saharan Africa.

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Showing posts for "African Solutions"

South Africa’s Jacob Zuma Stonewalls on Corruption Charges

by John Campbell
A member of the Economic Freedom Fighters stands on the roof of a house they built for an elderly woman, near the homestead of South African president Jacob Zuma (in the background), in Nkandla January 11, 2014. (Rogan Ward/Courtesy Reuters) A member of the Economic Freedom Fighters stands on the roof of a house they built for an elderly woman, near the homestead of South African president Jacob Zuma (in the background), in Nkandla January 11, 2014. (Rogan Ward/Courtesy Reuters)

South Africa’s Public Protector stated in a recent report that taxpayer money funded improvements to Nkandla, President Jacob Zuma’s private estate. The public protector found this “unconscionable, excessive, and caused a misappropriation of public funds.” President Zuma made his first public comment on March 31, in remarks carried by a TV station. He said, “I never did anything wrong.” In effect, he is blaming his subordinates within the governing African National Congress (ANC). Read more »

Really, Really Rich People in Africa

by John Campbell
Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan (back L) looks on as Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote points to the site of a new cement plant branch during a commissioning ceremony at the Dangote cement factory in Obajana, Kogi state, June 11, 2012. (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters) Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan (back L) looks on as Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote points to the site of a new cement plant branch during a commissioning ceremony at the Dangote cement factory in Obajana, Kogi state, June 11, 2012. (Akintunde Akinleye/Courtesy Reuters)

According to Forbes, the first African ever has entered into the “top 25” of the world’s billionaires. He is Aliko Dangote, number 23. Forbes says that his net worth is now U.S. $25 billion up from $3.3 billion in 2007. His wealth is based on cement, but he is also investing in agriculture. Read more »

All the King’s Men: Goodluck Jonathan and Aliyu Mohammed Gusau

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell
New chief of naval staff, Rear Admiral Usman O. Jibrin (centre seated L), and outgoing Vice Admiral Dele Joseph Ezeoba attend a handing over ceremony in Abuja,January 20, 2014. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters) New chief of naval staff, Rear Admiral Usman O. Jibrin (centre seated L), and outgoing Vice Admiral Dele Joseph Ezeoba attend a handing over ceremony in Abuja,January 20, 2014. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Jim Sanders, a career, now retired, West Africa watcher for various federal agencies. The views expressed below are his personal views and do not reflect those of his former employers.

The accession of retired general Aliyu Mohammed Gusau, whose career extends back to Nigeria’s civil war, to a newly empowered Ministry of Defense evidences the gravity of the war in northeastern Nigeria, the president’s inability to deal with it, and the tendency of a political system sustained by patronage and corruption to look backward in crisis, rather than forward. Read more »

African Economies: Growing Quickly But Transforming Slowly

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell
Labourers work at a mine believed to contain gold in Minna, Niger State, June 23, 2013. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters) Labourers work at a mine believed to contain gold in Minna, Niger State, June 23, 2013. (Afolabi Sotunde/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Diptesh Soni. Diptesh is a master’s degree candidate at the Columbia University School of International Public Affairs (SIPA) studying economic and political development. You can read more by him at: https://dipteshsoni.contently.com/. Read more »

Compatibility Issues in Somalia: Governance and Economics

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell
A truck drives through Bakara market in Mogadishu, October 5, 2013. (Feisal Omar/Courtesy Reuters) A truck drives through Bakara market in Mogadishu, October 5, 2013. (Feisal Omar/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Alex Dick-Godfrey, program coordinator, Studies administration for the Council on Foreign Relations Studies program. 

Somalia continues to improve after a nearly a quarter century of war, but integrating economics and governance remains difficult. Read more »

Tapping into Africa’s Potential: Why the Marginalized Matter

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell
A woman sets up her shop at the Konyo Konyo market in Juba, South Sudan, May 12, 2012. (Adriane Ohanesian/Courtesy Reuters) A woman sets up her shop at the Konyo Konyo market in Juba, South Sudan, May 12, 2012. (Adriane Ohanesian/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Lynn ElHarake, research associate for the Women and Foreign Policy program at the Council on Foreign Relations.

“Africa is now the world’s youngest continent,” writes Makhtar Diop, vice president for Africa at the World Bank. “These young people have high expectations, and African policy makers are increasingly concerned about how to meet them.” Read more »

African Optimists

by John Campbell
A Somali boy jumps between old fishing boats above Mogadishu's fishing harbour near the fish market in the Xamar Weyne district of the Somali capital, in this handout photo taken March 16, 2013 by the African Union-United Nations Information Support Team (AU-UN IST) and released March 18, 2013. (Handout/Courtesy Reuters) A Somali boy jumps between old fishing boats above Mogadishu's fishing harbour near the fish market in the Xamar Weyne district of the Somali capital, in this handout photo taken March 16, 2013 by the African Union-United Nations Information Support Team (AU-UN IST) and released March 18, 2013. (Handout/Courtesy Reuters)

Joshua Keating has written a brief, thought-provoking article in Slate titled “The Optimistic Continent.” He notes that the World Economic Forum’s Survey on the Global Agenda identifies Africa as the world’s most optimistic region about the ability of institutions (public and private) to respond to “global challenges.” Read more »

Dr. Denis Mukwege: A Surgeon in the “Rape Capital of the World”

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell
Denis Mukwege, a Congolese doctor who founded the Panzi Hospital and specialises in treating victims of sexual violence, addresses a global rally "One Billion Rising", which is a part of a V-Day event calling for an end to gender-based violence, in Bukavu February 14, 2013. (Jana Asenbrennerova/Courtesy Reuters) Denis Mukwege, a Congolese doctor who founded the Panzi Hospital and specialises in treating victims of sexual violence, addresses a global rally "One Billion Rising", which is a part of a V-Day event calling for an end to gender-based violence, in Bukavu February 14, 2013. (Jana Asenbrennerova/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Emily Mellgard, research associate for the Council on Foreign Relations Africa Studies program.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been back in the media over the past few days with the news that the UN mission MONUSCO and the DRC military (FARDC) have succeeded in pushing the M23 rebels out of many of their fortified positions and into the jungles along the border with Rwanda. Read more »

Unpacking Africa’s Growth Forecasts: Potentials and Risks

by Guest Blogger for John Campbell
Workers are seen in front the construction site of Eskom's Medupi power station, a new dry-cooled coal fired power station, in Limpopo province, June 8, 2012. (Siphiwe Sibeko/Courtesy Reuters) Workers are seen in front the construction site of Eskom's Medupi power station, a new dry-cooled coal fired power station, in Limpopo province, June 8, 2012. (Siphiwe Sibeko/Courtesy Reuters)

This is a guest post by Diptesh Soni. Diptesh is a master’s degree candidate at the Columbia University School of International Public Affairs (SIPA) studying economic and political development. You can read more by him at: https://dipteshsoni.contently.com/. Read more »

Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe: Unjust Rewards?

by John Campbell
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe addresses the crowd gathered to commemorate Heroes Day in Harare August 12, 2013. (Philimon Bulawayo/Courtesy Reuters) Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe addresses the crowd gathered to commemorate Heroes Day in Harare August 12, 2013. (Philimon Bulawayo/Courtesy Reuters)

Only weeks after he won Zimbabwe’s sham elections, Robert Mugabe was elected deputy chairperson of the Southern African Development Community (SADC). Malawi’s president Joyce Banda was elected chairperson. After she completes her one-year term, Mugabe will become the chairperson. SADC, for the time being, has embraced Mugabe. Read more »