Friday

African Peer Review Mechanism

The African Peer Review Mechanism is "aimed at promoting good governance among African leaders." It is the brain-child of the African Union and the New Partnership for Africa's Development (Nepad). It basically involves member countries surveying each other's economic and social policies, and also intends to thwart mis-rule in Africa by undoing the tacit post-colonial agreement among African countries not to criticise one another.
The goal of the mechanism is to get African leaders to subject their governments to ongoing examination by other Africans in such priority areas as peace and security, democracy and political governance, and economic and corporate management. The UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has been given primary responsibility for working out objective indicators that can be used to actually measure governments' adherence to such standards.
Yeah. But wait...it's a nice idea, won't it be hard to implement, given our continental record for pulling things off? No country is under any obligation to join, so our dictating fat-cats will just keep their regimes out, won't they? And then, what's in it for the general population? I mean, the fat-cats must remain convinced that negative Peer Review results will be negative for their political careers. Of course. The carrot is embodied by more international aid for joining and having everything scrutinised, and the stick by a national stigma for not joining and for getting negative reviews. We're tottering along, but hey, as the Amharic proverb says, "Little by little, an egg will walk."