L’autre Afrique

LONDRES – L’image que l’on se fait généralement de l’Afrique est celle d’un continent enlisé dans des conflits sanglants et une misère noire. Mais cette perception, basée sur les régimes africains les plus corrompus, est injuste et trompeuse – elle revient à dire que tous les Européens sont coupables de « nettoyage ethnique » à cause de ce qui s’est passé dans l’ancienne Yougoslavie. L’Afrique a bien sûr des États faillis, mais la plupart des 53 pays qui composent le continent sont pour l’essentiel des endroits paisibles et agréables.

L’an dernier, l’indice Ibrahim annuel de la gouvernance en Afrique, établi par ma fondation, a montré que la gouvernance s’était améliorée dans les deux tiers des pays africains. Si nous nous référons à des politiciens comme Joaquim Chissaro, l’ancien président du Mozambique, ou Festus Mogae, l’ancien président du Botswana, ou des hommes comme Kofi Annan et Nelson Mandela, l’envergure du leadership africain est évidente.

Ce point est important parce qu’une bonne gouvernance est la pierre angulaire du développement. Les gouvernements doivent établir un environnement qui permette au secteur privé de créer des emplois. D’autre part, les responsables ne peuvent pas considérer les finances publiques comme un compte bancaire privé. Même si la responsabilité du gouvernement est de fournir des services aux citoyens, c’est à la société civile de veiller à ce que les autorités oeuvrent dans ce sens. Une société civile forte qui suit de près et demande davantage à ses dirigeants est essentielle à l’amélioration de la gouvernance en Afrique. Comme dans le domaine de l’économie, l’offre est stimulée par la demande.

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