Director-General of the Department of State Services, Mr Yusuf Bichi, on Thursday said many African countries including Nigeria were facing difficulties in deepening democracies they inherited post-colonial era due to weak institutions and poor leadership
Bichi stated this at the 2022 distinguished personality lecture on “Building the Democratic Culture in Africa: The Pains and Gains” organised for Executive Intelligence Management Course (EIMC-15) at the National Institute for Security Studies (NISS) in Abuja.
Noting that Africa countries were struggling to build institutions that can endure stress and deliver democracy and development, Bichi observed a significant transformation in the political systems in many African countries, adding that “some of which have enhanced regional security and development.”
Represented by Director of training in the secret agency, Brown Nkoaba, the DSS boss said West African sub-region and indeed Africa were currently going through perilous storms as a result of political instability in some parts of the continent.
He said: Historically, there have been a significant transformation in the political systems in many African countries, some of which have enhanced regional security and development.
“Worthy of notes here are institutional changes that have transitioned from the racially based apartheid regime in South Africa to non-racial democracy.
“Many civilian and military dictatorship has fallen for the establishment of rule of law based governance systems, characterized by constitutionalism, including reforms such as observation of pandemics in office.
“However, many African countries are still struggling to deepen and institutionalise democratic tenets and culture as against governmental impunity, human rights violation, abuse of executive powers, among others.
“It is gratifying to note that most African regional organisations have a stated vocation of promoting democracy but the foundations and institutions of political culture necessary to sustain liberal democracy can best be described as weak for most of the post colonial era.
“Some governents across African continent are becoming more alienated for the people that claim to be representing towards giving rise to political instability within the region, as already seen in some countries in Central Africa, and in some countries in West Africa in recent times.
Bichi called on leaders across the continent to rise and tackle the democratic challenges bedeveling the continent.
Delivering his lecture, Vice Chancellor, Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT), Prof. Aloysius-Michael Okolie said Nigeria must deal with the root cause of insecurity to end the menace.
According to him, most African leaders are aware of the solutions to the problems in the region but they are not committed to resolving to issues due for selfish interest.
“I have been saying this that if you want to deal with insecurity, you must first deal with its root cause unless you would just see people buying cars and houses meant for security. Everywhere in the world where there is hierarchy, there is tendencies for domination and even with globalisation and democracy which brought about freedom of expression, there is limit to this freedom”, he said.