Africa’s Militaries: A Missing Link in Democratic Transitions

By Africa Center for Strategic Studies
Updated: 01/22/2012

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By Mathurin C. Houngnikpo. Africa Center for Strategic Studies, January 2012.

The institutionalization of democratic norms in Africa’s militaries is often lagging behind advances made in civilian institutions and civil society. In some situations, security sectors have actively aligned themselves with incumbent leaders seeking to stay in power or directly intervened in politics, thereby discrediting the entire security sector and marginalizing its role when transitions do occur. With national elections becoming increasingly routine and subject to stricter oversight, such dilemmas will continue to be front and center in Africa’s political development.

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