Democracy and Development in Africa by Claude Ake

By Claude Ake

Regardless of 3 many years of preoccupations with improvement in Africa, the economies of so much African countries are still-stagnating or regressing.

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The complexity and multiplicity of such organizations and the slow pace of democratic arrangements cause some resistance to the strategy of this development policy option. Although these problems may be reduced, they cannot be eliminated, for they are inherent in the strategy of making development a living experience. 46 47 The values of the agricultural strategy of the paradigm that have been outlined here assume the necessity and desirability of smallholder agriculture. That comes from the commitment of taking people as they are and not as they ought to be.

We are convinced that neither can Africa's perpetual economic crisis be overcome, nor can a bright future for Africa and its people see the light of day unless the structure, pattern and political context of the process of socio-economic development are appropriately altered. We therefore have no doubt that at the heart of Africa's development objectives must lie the ultimate and overriding good of human-centered development that ensures the overall well-being of the people through 34 35 Â < previous page < previous page page_138 page_139 next page > next page > Page 139 sustained improvement in their living standards and the full and effective participation of the people in charting their development policies, programmes and processes and contributing to their realization.

They appear exhausted, defeated, and bewildered, and they have ceded the initiative to the international development community, which has also been beaten by the so-called African problem, although still managing to keep the appearance of self-assurance through ideological dogmatism. The African political elites have been further weakened by the sheer visibility of their lack of control, their poverty of ideas, and their humiliation. Everyone can see the tragic consequences of a grossly mismanaged economy, and everyone can see that those responsible for it do not know how to make amends.

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