Child overlooking African landscape

Africa’s Growing War on Corruption

Corruption has been nearly universal in Africa, blighting almost every country. But there are encouraging glimmers of change, which will grow and spread more quickly if leaders take on the deeply entrenched culture of impunity that afflicts major countries like Kenya.

NAIROBI – To the chagrin of most Africans, the world has long viewed their continent through the prism of the three “Cs” – conflict, contagion, and corruption.

Yet the first two are anything but general. Civil war is confined mainly to particular regions – for example, South Sudan or the Democratic Republic of Congo. And Ebola in West Africa spread more to Europe and the United States than to the rest of the continent. But the third, corruption, has been universal, blighting almost every country.

There are, however, encouraging glimmers of change. If they grow and spread, Africa’s fortunes could brighten considerably.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.


Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.