Africa-related Events in the Washington, D.C.
Policy . Politics . Business . Trade . Finance
. Civil Society . Arts . Culture .
ALPN founder/director, Dr. Michael Isimbabi's
& Progress Briefs
The Mo Ibrahim African Governance Index and
Leadership Prize Revisited: How Dr. Ibrahim and Other Well-Off
Africans Can Best Foster Good Governance in African Countries
Humiliation: 'Brain Gain'/'Brain Circulation' Diaspora Networks for
After the 2005 G8 and UN Summits: Independent,
High-Impact Information Infrastructures and Networks for
Transparency and Accountability in African Countries
Leadership & Governance Capacity Building in
African Countries: Why and How Well-Off and Accomplished
Africans, Especially "Brain Drain" Africans, Should Proactively Take
Charge of Fostering African Progress
Mo Ibrahim African Governance Index and Leadership Prize -
Commentaries & Critiques
Capital Flows, Tax Evasion, and African Development
Brain Drain, Brain Gain,
Brain Circulation, Diaspora Africans, and Capacity Building in
Perspectives on African Leadership, NEPAD, the
African Union, Etc.
The Mo Ibrahim
African Governance Index and Leadership Prize: Commentaries &
also the ALPN Brief:
The Mo Ibrahim African Governance
Index and Leadership Prize Revisited: How Dr. Ibrahim and Other
Well-Off Africans Can Best Foster Good Governance in African Countries
(By Jump-Starting Resource-Pooling Efforts to Build High-Impact
Independent Information-based Institutions and Infrastructures that
Will Foster Accountability and the Emergence of Visionary and
For links to the websites of organizations and
initiatives that are actively helping to foster transparency,
accountability, and better governance in African countries -- through
capacity building, research, analysis/evaluation, information
dissemination, public education, and advocacy -- visit our
Governance - Transparency - Corruption -
The Resource Curse
Mo Ibrahim and Foundation Members on the Index and Prize
Mo Ibrahim Foundation Website
Ibrahim Index of
Governance: Ibrahim Index of African Governance 2008.
The 2008 Rankings.
Mo Ibrahim Foundation
An African Scorecard.
African governance is getting better.
Robert Rotberg. International Herald Tribune
The full 2008 Ibrahim
Mo Ibrahim Foundation
announces next steps to strengthen Ibrahim Index.
6 October 2008
Criteria for a continent. Mo Ibrahim. The World in 2008 (The Economist)
Rewarding good governance in Africa: Criteria for a continent. Video
Mo Ibrahim talks about why governance is a necessary first step for the
development of Sub-Saharan Africa...
Mo Ibrahim unveiled. Liz Ng'ang'a. The East African.
Agenda: Sustainable Development
In Africa Requires Good Governance.
Speech at the 7th Global Forum on Reinventing Government: Building
Trust in Government - UN Headquarters, Vienna, 25-29 June 2007. Mo
Lunch with the FT: Mo Ibrahim. Financial Times
A powerful voice for Africa. Kofi Annan. Joaquim Chissano's role
in leading Mozambique from conflict to peace and democracy made him a
very worthy winner of the Mo Ibrahim prize.
prize may improve African leadership - Annan. (Kofi Annan,
Chair of the
What Africa Really
Needs is Visionary Leadership. Henry Ekwuruke (member of the Mo
Ibrahim Foundation's Prize Committee)
Continent will reap reward of leadership. Mamphela Ramphele
(member of the board of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation)
Index Is a Work in Progress, Rotberg Says. allAfrica.com
Governance for Development in Africa Initiative GDAI - PhD scholarships GDAI - Visiting Fellowships
...increasing knowledge and
debate in Africa on the economic, political and legal dimensions of
governance and development.
The Mo Ibrahim Foundation’s £1.375
million gift will fund four dedicated programmes at SOAS: Leadership
Development Fellowships; Residential Schools in Africa; Governance
Lectures; and PhD Scholarships.
SOAS commemorates generous gift from Mo Ibrahim Foundation. 27 March 2008
Trophy leaders are not enough. Calestous Juma.
The Guardian (UK).
"...The $5m prize intended to help improve Africa's leadership risks
diverting attention from more critical institutional issues. ...Much of
Africa currently holds multi-party elections. But parliaments are poorly
supported. Elected leaders can hardly be effective representatives of their
people. For example, many parliaments debate national budgets but they cannot
influence their contents. They merely rubber-stamp proposals for the executive
branch, many of which are discussed in advance with development partners.
Similarly, judicial offices remain under-funded and lack the administrative
infrastructure to render justice in a fair and efficient way. They need to
digitise their records but can hardly get the support to do so. The lack of
administrative infrastructure reduces transparency, breeding corruption and
other malpractices. All of this will reflect badly on leaders in power. The
prize serves a useful purpose in focusing attention on the need to improve
governance in general and leadership in particular, but more needs to be done
to help Africa build the institutional infrastructure needed to deepen
If political culture is unsound, no prize will improve governance.
Xolela Mangcu. BusinessDay (South Africa).
"...It is in civil
society that the deliberation about good governance and good
leadership must be located. Ultimately, the defining legacy of the Mo
Ibrahim Foundation initiative will be the extent to which instruments
such as prizes and indexes are leveraged to liberate the political
cultures of our societies...."
How to Rank
Good Governance: The Mo Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership.
Brookings Institution Panel Discussion. October 25, 2007.
Brookings hosted Professor Rotberg who discussed the
creation of the new index and the implications of the African Leadership Prize
for the improvement of governance in Africa. He was joined by Chris Fomuyoh,
director for Central and West Africa at the National Democratic Institute (NDI)
and Aart Kraay, lead economist in the Development Research Group at the World
Transcript of Panel Discussion
The Mo Ibrahim Prize: Robbing Peter to Pay Paul. Issa Shivji
on Issa Shivji's Critique of Mo Ibrahim's Prize. African Path Blog
Mo Ibrahim Index in Spotlight:
Is Zimbabwe Better Governed Than Nigeria? Freedom House Blog
Assessing governance: No easy task. Marta Foresti. Overseas Development
Institute (UK) Blog
Bribing African leaders to
leave power on time. Richard Dowden. New Vision (Uganda)
Lawrence Haddad on the Mo Ibrahim Prize.
Institute of Development Studies, UK
In Africa, it's death by leadership.
....Unwilling to criticize actual African leaders, these global actors
promote safe, sanitary “benchmarks” for leadership. These benchmarks,
always debateable and grounded in mushy statistics, are psuedo-scientific,
misleading and ultimately corrosive. Defenders say these indices are
better than nothing. Yet metrics for leadership can only grow out of
the societies in which leaders themselves grow....The trouble with
leadership in Africa is not a lack of great leaders or an ignorance
about what constitutes great leadership. I meet great leaders all the
time in Africa. They lack power, not a moral compass. Their honesty
and integrity are a handicap. They are smothered, pressured, and
sometimes even extinguished by rivalrous bad leaders who in an endless
display of Gresham’s Law prove time again that “bad (leaders) drive
out good.” The academic indices for African leadership don’t calculate
the one ultimate source of leadership: people power...
Ordinary – The New Extraordinary. Hennie van Vuuren. Institute for Security Studies, South Africa
The extent to which the positive values of
African leadership have been debased found expression in the inaugural
Mo-Ibrahim Prize for Achievement in African Leadership. ...Africa,
therefore, seemingly demands a different set of governance standards.
Could it be that there are two objective measures of governance – that
which is ‘African’ and that which is ‘good’ (the rest of the world)?
What follows is an implicit assumption that African leaders are so
corrupt and money hungry that the only way to ensure that they do the
right thing is to dangle the lure of more money...A real concern is
that this reinforces a colonial stereotype of the African ethical
compass, one guided only by a shiny silver dollar. If anything leaders
like Chissano and his peers should vocally reject initiatives such as
this which serve only to patronise. The tacit acceptance of such
awards send a subtle message to aspirant African politicians,
businessmen and the millions of bureaucrats across the continent:
‘doing the right thing’ – doing what one is elected and/or paid to do
- is not part of the African ‘condition’ but is instead something
special’. We therefore run the risk of elevating what should be
ordinary behaviour to the level of the extraordinary...
What is good governance? Kwaku Asante-Darko. Mail & Guardian (South
Bribing Africa’s Leaders to Stop
Corruption. Gathara’s World
Celebrating miserable African leaders. Dennis Matanda.
Sub-Saharan African Roundtable Blog
Raphael G. Satter, Associated Press
good cause: Mo Ibrahim’s first-ever bribe.
The Ibrahim Index on African governance. African Business (Cover
Story). November 2007
Can a prize for good governance make
Ultimate Golden Handshake. Moyiga Nduru
Ibrahim's Prize for African achievers. Kipkoech Komugor.
Is $5m the
cost of good governance in Africa? Ethan Zuckerman
Africa's new $5 million prize for top leaders.
Christian Science Monitor
The Mo Ibrahim Prize.
In support of good governance in Africa. Anja Merret.
Let Freedom Ring (Prepaid). Quentin Hardy. Forbes.
London: African Leadership Achievement Prize for Good Governance
Announced. Jewels in the Jungle Blog
"...Patrick Smith, noted editor of Africa Confidential writes in
his weekly newsletter:
....Some African leaders cause problems but so do its weak
institutions that allow personal rule. The $5 mn. incentive would only
be of interest to a narrow group, somewhere between those effective
leaders who stick to their countries' constitutional term limits and
those venal, oppressive leaders for whom $5 mn. is less than a
More questions still are being asked about Professor Rotberg's index
of good governance. Will the Professor and his team of two researchers
at Harvard complete their full governance rankings for 48 African
states by the middle of next year as promised? How much will they rely
on the notoriously inaccurate statistics of the World Bank, IMF and UN
agencies? How much field work will they do in Africa? How many African
institutions and academics will they involve?
All these issues are under consideration, Dr Mo and Professor Rotberg
assured me. Clearly, there is much preparatory work to be done and big
decisions to be taken if the 'Ibrahim index', as they call the African
governance rankings, are going to have the hoped-for impact. In one
respect, the Foundation is already succeeding: more people than ever
are talking about standards of government in Africa, its institutions
and leaders. 'Governance has come out of the closet in Africa,' as Dr
Prize offered to Africa's leaders.
26 Oct 2006. "...Patrick Smith, of specialist publication
Africa Confidential, said: "The people who know what to do and have
done well are already doing it....And the people who are doing badly
and are killing their own people or stealing state resources are going
to carry on doing that."
Index to judge African leadership.
Leading article: Money alone will not change Africa's ways. The
Independent (UK). 27 October 2006
Prize of $5m awaits honest African rulers. The Guardian (UK).
October 25, 2006
Virtue Has Its Own Rewards. Wall Street Journal Online.
October 26, 2006. .
Carrots for kleptocrats
(Letter to the Editor).
Financial Times. Oct 28, 2006
Buying Out Dictatorships.
leaders offered prize for ruling well. The New York Times.
October 26, 2006
Record-Breaking Governance Prize Launched. allAfrica.com. October
Mo Ibrahim Foundation Prize for Achievement in African Leadership.
Thumbs up or down for African prize?