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The Rule of Law and Poverty Eradication in Africa

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image of African and Asian Studies
For more content, see Journal of Asian and African Studies.

Africa’s struggle against mass poverty and deprivation is examined using a constitutional political economy approach. It is argued that the failure of many African countries to deal effectively with poverty is due to the fact that since independence, these countries have not been able to engage in democratic constitution making to provide themselves with institutional arrangements that guarantee the rule of law. Such institutions must adequately constrain civil servants and political elites, enhance peaceful coexistence, and provide an enabling environment for the creation of wealth. The process to reconstruct and reconstitute African states has been on going since decolonization. The Arab awakening, which began in North Africa, and the pro-democracy demonstrations of the mid-1980s and early-1990s, are a continuation of this effort to secure the laws and institutions that enhance the creation of wealth and provide an enabling environment for the eventual eradication of poverty. Unless the African countries provide themselves with institutional arrangements that guarantee the rule of law, poverty will remain pervasive.

Affiliations: 1: Weber State UniversityOgden,


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