Institutions and Reform in Africa: The Public Choice Perspective

By John Mukum Mbaku; Gordon Tullock | Go to book overview

proach to policy formulation and implementation. Unlike the apartheid regime, which had made decisions unilaterally without consulting the majority of the people or their dully elected representatives, the GNU has placed significant emphasis on open debate and extensive consultation with the population at large. The new government believes that this approach, although it appears cumbersome and time-consuming, is necessary in order for the government to achieve and retain legitimacy and further the cause of democracy in the country ( Webb 1995, 10).

Apartheid was so total in its destruction of black people in South Africa that the new government has a very difficult task as it struggles to reconstruct the country's laws and institutions and pave the way for growth and development. The GNU seems to have started very well, since it has placed significant emphasis on the construction of viable constitutional rules, which it believes will form the foundation for the nation's reconstruction program. Unless South Africans are provided with constitutional rules that effectively constrain the coercive power of the state and maximize individual contribution to national development, the country will be unable to generate the resources needed to eliminate mass poverty among its historically deprived communities.


NOTES
1.
This section is based primarily on Mbaku John M. 1993. "Markets and the origins of apartheid in South Africa". The Indian Journal of Social Science 6: 139- 158. The material is used with permission of the copyright holders, Indian Council of Social Science Research, New Delhi, and the publisher, Sage Publications India Pvt Ltd.
2.
This section is based on information provided by Dr. Harold Wesso, provincial administrator of the Western Cape for the GNU's RDP. I obtained the information during a visit to South Africa in June 1996 as part of the. Council on International Educational Exchange's faculty development seminar on South Africa. The information was provided as a part of a formal lecture to participants in the seminar. Additional information on the RDP was obtained from discussions with professors at the University of the Western Cape, University of Cape Town, University of Pretoria, Unisa, Medunsa, and the University of the Witwatersrand, and from conversations with ordinary South Africans at the remembrance ceremonies held at Morris Isaacson High School (in Soweto) for the victims of the June 16, 1976, massacre.

-165-

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Institutions and Reform in Africa: The Public Choice Perspective
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Tables ix
  • Foreword xi
  • Notes xv
  • Acknowledgments xvii
  • 1 - General Introduction 1
  • 2 - The African Economies 19
  • Introduction 19
  • 3 - Changing Global Trade Patterns and Economic Dependence in Africa 33
  • Introduction 33
  • Conclusion 59
  • 4 - Public Choice and African Institutions 61
  • 5 - Origin of Inefficient Constitutional Rules 73
  • Introduction 73
  • 6 - Political Instability in Africa 91
  • Introduction 91
  • APPENDIX: REGRESSION ANALYSIS OF POLITICAL INSTABILITY AND ECONOMIC GROWTH IN AFRICA 105
  • 7 - Bureaucratic and Political Corruption 111
  • 8 - Post-Constitutional Opportunism in Africa 139
  • Introduction 165
  • 9 167
  • 10 - Public Choice and Institutional Reform 177
  • 11 - Democratization Strategies for Africa 189
  • Introduction 189
  • 12 - Preparing Africa for the Twenty- First Century: Lessons from Public Choice 209
  • Introduction 209
  • Conclusion 230
  • Notes 230
  • 13 - Conclusions: Looking Forward to the Twenty-First Century 233
  • Bibliography 239
  • Index 259
  • About the Author 283
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