Progress and Retreat in Africa: Presidents Untamed

Issue Date April 2008
Volume 19
Issue 2
Page Numbers 109-123
file Print
arrow-down-thin Download from Project MUSE
external View Citation

Tolerance for presidential misrule and indefinite presidential tenure may have worn thin in Africa’s democratizing polities, but with voters still caring most about beating the twin scourges of underdevelopment and economic marginalization, belief in the beneficent uses of preponderant executive power continues to run strong. African polities must move beyond the fixation with “strong” leadership and focus instead on building credible and effective institutions at both the national and local levels. If anything, an imperial presidency magnifies the costs of having an incompetent or bad leader at the helm.

About the Author

H. Kwasi Prempeh, professor of law at Seton Hall University, is former director of legal policy and governance at CDD-Ghana and was a 2011 Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellow.

View all work by H. Kwasi Prempeh