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Subverting Democracy in Tanzania and Zambia

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on September 17, 2019

Tanzania and Zambia’s slide toward authoritarianism reveals the weaknesses of existing checks and balances and undermines their reputation as models of democratic development.

Africa Center Hosts Outreach Symposium with Zambia Partners

Community engagement   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on April 14, 2014

The Center held symposia in Zambia on AU architecture and insecurity in SADC, national security and security sector reform, and collaboration between the military and police.

Overcoming the Disparity in Africa’s COVID Vaccine Access

Spotlight   published by the Africa Center for Strategic Studies on July 23, 2021

Africa is facing a major disparity in its COVID vaccine access relative to any other region in the world, amplifying the human costs that Africans bear from the Delta variant surge.

Chinese Security Firms Spread along the African Belt and Road

Spotlight   published by Paul Nantulya on June 15, 2021

The deployment of Chinese security firms in Africa is expanding without a strong regulatory framework. This poses heightened risks to African citizens and raises fundamental questions over responsibility for security in Africa.

Justice and Rule of Law Key to African Security

Spotlight   published by Catherine Lena Kelly on May 25, 2021

The integration of justice initiatives within conventional security efforts can mitigate conflict, improve societal resilience, and build a stronger culture supportive of the rule of law.

Russia’s Strategic Goals in Africa

(This article originally appeared as a chapter in "Russia Strategic Intentions White Paper," Strategic Multilayer Assessment (SMA) publication series, NSI, May 2019.)
Russia has significantly expanded its engagements in Africa in recent years. These engagements often take the form of propping up embattled and isolated autocratic leaders of countries that are rich in natural resources. The United States can draw a distinction with Russia’s destabilizing role by pursuing a positive engagement strategy in Africa. The United States must avoid the Cold War trap of competing with Russia for the affections of corrupt, autocratic leaders in Africa, however, as such a policy would be disastrous for Africa while not advancing US interests.

Reshaping African Agency in China-Africa Relations

Spotlight   published by Paul Nantulya on March 2, 2021

The power imbalance between China and Africa poses a challenge for negotiating equitable investment deals. The interests of African citizens can be strengthened through agreements that are transparent, involve experts, and facilitate public engagement.

Taking Stock of Africa’s 2021 Elections

Spotlight   published by Joseph Siegle and Candace Cook on January 12, 2021

Africa is slated to hold 13 national elections in 2021. Roughly half of these are in the Horn and the central Sahel. Reflective of the democratic backsliding observed on the continent in recent years, more than a third of these polls are little more than political theater – aimed at garnering a fig leaf of legitimacy for leaders who arguably lack a popular mandate. A fundamental question for this year’s elections, therefore, isn’t just about who will win, but how these leaders will be viewed afterward. Will the same level of legitimacy be conferred on leaders who stay in office via these stage-managed processes? Until these leaders bear a reputational cost for lowering the bar of electoral integrity, this trend can be expected to continue.

China Promotes Its Party-Army Model in Africa

Spotlight   published by Paul Nantulya on July 28, 2020

China’s party-army model, whereby the army is subordinate to a single ruling party, is antithetical to the multiparty democratic systems with an apolitical military accountable to elected leaders adopted by most African countries.

What the Coronavirus Means for Africa

Spotlight   published by Shannon Smith on February 4, 2020

Given its fragile public health systems and close ties to China, Africa is vulnerable to the spread of the coronavirus, highlighting the continent’s centrality to global health security.