A woman votes in Zambia. Beyond multi-party systems and regular elections, many countries resemble very little of true democracies.
Democracy is in a parlous state in many countries in southern Africa. Autocrats hold onto power, while electorates have little to choose from at the polls.
President Jacob Zuma, left, gets a courtesy visit from President of Namibia Hage Geingob in 2015 in Cape Town.
South Africa's ANC and Namibia's SWAPO, governing parties, enter crucial leadership elections this year, with presidents Zuma and Geingob both facing challenges.
Three democracies once considered beacons of hope are in varying states of disarray.
ANC military veterans guard the party’s headquarters.
The militant talk and antics by the ANC's ex-soldiers may seem like theatrics, but they are a chilling reminder of how Zimbabwe used armed militia to crash opponents and democracy.
Leo Zeilig’s latest novel is set in the Robert Mugabe-ruled Zimbabwe.
Leo Zeilig's novel features a superbly crafted cast of characters. It's a page turner for readers interested in the profound questions of radical politics and humanity.
Still going: Robert Mugabe celebrates yet another year.
It's hard to award a prize to esteemed former leaders when so many are determined to die in office.
Rwandan President Paul Kagame attending a 2016 climate change conference in Marrakech, Morocco.
A Trump presidency brings into question America’s traditional approach to Africa, especially Rwanda. But a true shift in US foreign policy in Africa is not a priority for the Trump administration.
Presidents Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, Muhammadu Buhari, Macky Sall and former Ghanian President John Mahama at a special meeting of Ecowas on The Gambia.
SADC's credibility is at stake. Its lack of political will in acting decisively against despots is at odds with the African Union's goal of promoting legitimate governance on the continent.
The Gambia’s Yahya Jammeh is under pressure from regional leaders to cede power.
The Gambian election dispute is not the first that ECOWAS has confronted. Côte d’Ivoire’s 2010 presidential election is a case in point. There it resorted to military action to enforce the outcome.
A mural depicting populist dictators painted onto remnants of the Berlin Wall in Berlin in 2014.
The legitimacy and credibility of those in power has been eroded by bad governance, patronage and the obsession to claim an exclusive agency representing the people.
A farm worker tends to a tobacco crop in Beatrice, Zimbabwe. The county has struggled to deliver land reform that benefits landless communities.
Zimbabwe like many other post colonial governments across the globe continues to struggle to attain equitable land reform.
US President-elect Donald Trump has displayed behaviour that will resonate with autocrats in Africa.
Besides worries that Donald Trump might not make Africa a priority of his presidency, his temperament and views bode ill for democracy on the continent.
President Robert Mugabe has ruled Zimbabwe for 36 years.
Outsiders might not understand how someone who led his country’s downfall from breadbasket to basket case has remained in the presidency for so many years
If the Donald Trumps of the world want to find out how the masters of manufacturing elections work, they had better visit Zimbabwe before their internecine struggles close them down
Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame is seen as having promoted economic growth at the expense of human rights.
To improve, African countries need to find a balance between political and economic matters. This is where leadership becomes particularly important. But this is currently lacking on the continent.
Unemployed graduates are among those demanding political change in Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe's students and graduates are angry. They have every reason to be. The country's finances are badly managed and its economy is in crisis.
Robert Mugabe isn’t going anywhere. Or is he?
Technocrats across the African continent are battling to change the direction of corrupt, violent governments
Zimbabwe's ruling party is facing a wave of online and offline protest.
Supporters of Zimbabwean Pastor Evan Mawarire outside the Harare Magistrates’ Court during his trial.
The new forms of protest in Zimbabwe raise the possibility that the country's long-simmering crisis may have reached boiling point. The time could indeed be ripe for a unique form of politics.
Riot police detain residents of Epworth suburb after a protest by taxi drivers turned violent in Harare, Zimbabwe.
Zimbabwe has experienced another wave of discontent, manifesting in protests by its citizenry. This may well herald a change in the idea of citizenship in the country.