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MPSE-005: State and Society in Africa

MPSE-005: State and Society in Africa

IGNOU Solved Assignment Solution for 2022-23

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Assignment Code: MPSE-005/ASST/TMA/2022-23

Course Code: MPSE-005

Assignment Name: State and Society in Africa

Year: 2022-2023

Verification Status: Verified by Professor




1. Define the challenges of development in African countries.

Ans) The endemic problems range from abject poverty, violence, underutilise agriculture, infrastructure, lack of access to credit facilities, social fractionalisation, poor health facilities, poor education to catastrophic civil unrest; which are linked to illiteracy, lack of proper institution and exploitation by corrupt and brutal leaders. These block African from encountering and supporting sustainable development and recovery of Africa. When these gaps are addressed, many opportunities will open for the youth like entrepreneurship, which shall, in turn, create millions of employments and solve the problem of transitioning to the risk of unemployment.


Access to Capital


African’s financial system is not well established. Most of the financial institutions in the continent are foreign-owned that denied credit services to the local population due to their inability to match up the high transaction costs, difficulty in assessing and managing their risk profiles, lack of the required financial documentation as well as lack of collateral. If the countries could provide the supportive capacity to the African people, that could have equipped them enough to start their initiative of choice like a microfinance institution; an institution that will not only facilitate modernisation of the economy, but also help small business owners and farmers get access to capital through micro-financing.


Infrastructure development drives economic transformation


It is accepted that infrastructure development is critical to Africa’s economic transformation. The growth of the continent happens with the availability of adequate infrastructure. Many African countries still have insufficiency of state-owned infrastructure facilities, and that should’ve to lead to an effective contribution to the generation of revenue for the government that could be injected in the public activities. This necessitates for the state’s government to provide adequate facilities to the public, local and foreign private sector firms to promote rapid achievement of sustainable economic growth through Intra-Africa trade and investment.


Turning Resources into Continental Prosperity


Africa potentiality lies in it fertile land, water full of fishing as well as other water-natural resources, that can help its citizens, in its knowledge and markets transformation. With Africa recognising it natural  resource opportunity, agriculture could be significant pillars to the transformation of Africa economic and development, this can contribute to the continent major priorities such as eradicating of poverty and hunger in the region, boosting intra- Africa trade and investment, sustainable resources, promotion of industrialisation, creating jobs, human security, environmental management, and continent prosperity.


Energy security and other national resource are keys important to Africa development. Providing energy system to Africa rural household especially kerosene remains a major challenge due to the cost of electrifies infrastructure. Investment in a renewable energy project in Africa can increases insufficient, this believed that there is vast untapped natural gas in Africa with significant hydroelectric power potential.


Technology a Driver of Growth and Productivity


Africa has the advantage of being able to leapfrog directly to use the latest technology. It is estimated that more Africans have access to mobile phones than to clean water and electricity. Although costs remain high, Africa’s Internet infrastructure capacity has increased tenfold since 2006 and the entire continent now has access to undersea fibre optic cables.


African countries should begin to be partners to other developed countries in an enhancing conceptualisation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of developmental policies and programmes like agricultural productivities and strengthening financial institution; not economic slaves. Most of the African countries tend to borrow from other countries more than they produce. By so doing, they end up burdened by debt; and usually, creditors use this leverage to influence the countries’ policies on their favor. Such dependence interferes with the sovereignty of a country.


2. Describe the British and French pattern of colonialism in Africa.

Ans) British colonialism had two distinct manifestations. British policymakers envisioned granting a state within the British Commonwealth of Nations some degree of independence, emulating Australia and New Zealand, in those areas where a sizable white population had permanently settled and was managing the domestic affairs of the colonies, such as South Africa and Rhodesia (Zimbabwe). The British colonialization of the rest of Africa was founded on the idea of indirect authority. Lord Lugard, one of the most well-known British colonial administrators, popularised this idea by concluding that British colonialization should result in independence governed by governments with a black majority. Based on the premise that converting Africans into English citizens was neither feasible nor desirable, British colonial authorities sought to dominate in a covert manner through the existing traditional leaders. As a result, a variety of conventional systems of leadership within their colonies were not only maintained but also promoted by British colonial administrators.


Each colony was divided into administrative sub-divisions under a highly centralised style of direct administration known as French colonisation. Africans deemed to be loyal to France were assigned to administrate at the lower levels, while French officials directly administered at the higher levels. The French colonial model was the most extensive since it was built on an assimilationist philosophy. According to this idea, all African subjects could theoretically become full citizens of France if they fully embraced French culture and did so in a way that satisfied a number of requirements, such as mastering the French language, converting to Christianity, obtaining at least a high school education, and becoming a legally recognised owner. Many Africans, including Leopold Sedar Senghor, the first president of Senegal following independence, fully embraced this strategy in order to attain the status of volume (literally, a developed or civilised person) and pursue illustrious political careers both before and after their nations gained independence from French colonial rule. The truth is that the assimilation policy was, at best, restricted to a very small segment of the African elite. These individuals frequently found themselves stranded between two cultures—African and French—where their French neighbours would never genuinely embrace them as fellow citizens.


The French colonial model was comparable to the Belgian and Portuguese colonial models in that both sought to produce a class of citizens that had absorbed the main cultural traditions of Belgium and Portugal, respectively. Neither the Belgian evolues nor the Portuguese assimilados were ever likely to wield political power, whether in the shape of political inclusion or final independence, in contrast to their French counterparts. In an effort to present the finest public face for what was actually an exceedingly dictatorial style of government created to advance Belgian economic interests, the Belgians called their strategy "Scientific colonialism." After the military dictatorship led by Antonia de Oliveira Salazar came into power in 1928, the Portuguese were less concerned with such justifications. The Salazar dictatorship pushed the immigration of Portuguese settler populations capable of permanently managing the colonies, much to how the British encouraged white settlers.




Write a short note on each part of the question in about 250 words.


3. a) Post-Cold War peace-keeping in Africa

Ans) After the Cold War, the world's reliance on UN peacekeeping operations increased beyond all recognition. The 1990s saw bloodshed and savagery rather than a new era of peace and stability. Even if international conflicts have decreased, domestic conflicts have taken over. 95 percent of all armed conflicts fell under the heading of civil wars, where one or more rebel groups were engaged in combat with the governing faction.


These conflicts were merely nominally civil wars. The combatants' preferred weapons were small arms. There were 30 million small guns in use in Africa, 8 million of which were in the West African subregion. More than tlnn8 million people died, and countless women were sexually assaulted. They were all unrelated to the combatant groups. Children were made to commit murder. A member of almost every family had been murdered, injured, or sexually assaulted because they belonged to one group or the other. In a case of genocide in Rwanda in 1994, 500,000 Hutus and Tutsis perished in just four weeks. Similar casualties were reported in Angola, Congo, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Somalia. Africa grew to become the centre of these intra-state wars more so than Asia, Europe, or Central America. Forces from the neighbouring countries of Uganda, Burundi, and Rwanda actively participated in the conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Due of this, commentators referred to the fight as "Africa's world war." The Security Council spent the whole month of January 2000 debating Africa's complex problems. In 2003, a group of 15 council members travelled to six African nations that were experiencing war-related issues.


b) The end of Slave trade

Ans) The largest forced migration of individuals in history was a result of the trade in African slaves. It paved the way for the colonisation of Africa by the Europeans and created the foundation for the black population in the Caribbean and North and South America. It also upended social and political life in Africa. Strong states were enticed by the slave trade to invade lesser states in search of slaves. As a result, organised slave warfare and general banditry tore apart many African societies. New states that were created as a result of successful slave raiding and trading societies were ruled by militaries and were at perpetual war with their neighbours.


The real belief that slavery was immoral gave rise to the abolition movement, but it also gave Europeans a justification for invading and conquering the continent of Africa. The European powers firmly secured authority over the majority of Africa in the late 19th and early 20th century. Their authority dismantled slavery and other servile institutions, along with the rise of Christianity. Institutions like these didn't just vanish. In certain areas, reform took time, and pawn shops and slavery gradually disappeared. Colonial governments themselves created new servile institutions like forced labour for plantations or road construction. In order to pay their taxes, they also implemented taxation, which frequently obliged Africans to work for whatever salary they could find.

Many Africans were forced to work in conditions that were not far from servitude as a result. Additionally, local African leaders who collaborated with the new colonial administrations were frequently given permission to retain some control over those who had been used as slaves or pawns. Finally, despite the fact that Europe outlawed the sale and purchase of slaves, the rules were not always straightforward to uphold. ' Slave trafficking persisted for years in some parts of Africa. It continued to exist in some places even after the colonies' independence in the middle of the 20th century.


4. a) India policy towards Africa

Ans) Historical relations between African countries and India started in the 18th century and enlargened until today. India’s economic relations with African countries are based on the British colonial period. Those relations developed more in the 19th century. In that period, British colonials and merchants’ emigration of Indian workers to Africa played a significant role in India’s relations to deepen with the continent. Even the colonialism protestors in India and Africa had contact to widen Mahatma Gandhi’s activities.


When India gained independence in 1947 August, Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru prioritized building good and constructive cooperation between the newly-independent African countries. In order to achieve this, he supported nationalist movements and political parties in Africa. Moreover, India was a key organizer of the Asia-Africa Conference in the city of Bandung in Indonesia in 1955.


In the 1970s and 1980s, Indian Governments, the United Nations (UN), the Non-Aligned Movement, and the Commonwealth of Nations supported African independence movements differently. In 1986, Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi established African Fund within Non-Aligned Movement. India contributed 500 billion rupees to the fund finance South African and Namibian front states and independence movements. New Delhi provided education facilities to the supporters of the African National Congress as the policy of anti-Apartheid.


With the end of the Cold War, India’s Africa policy has changed. Although, New Delhi’s interest in Africa continued. At that point, India’s African strategy can be summed up as that way:

  1. Develop economic relations and cooperation in the energy field

  2. Develop and continue political relations with the African countries

  3. Care about Indian minorities in Africa and use them as a potential power

  4. Develop southern cooperation and strengthen the relations


b) Indian FDI in Africa

Ans) FDI inflows into Africa decreased from $9.4 billion in 1997 to $8.3 billion in 1998. The majority of the drop was attributed to South Africa, as FDI tied to privatisation decreased in 1998. In comparison to the levels in the 1980s, Africa has generally benefited from an increase in FDI inflows from the early 1990s. However, FDI inflow growth lagged behind that of other developing nations. Africa, which barely accounts for 5% of global FDI inflows to developing nations, is still waiting for its FDI potential to be realised.


Few countries receive the majority of the FDI that comes to Africa. While South Africa, Botswana, Cote de'Ivoire, and Tunisia are also top contenders to draw FDI, Nigeria and Egypt, which contributed for more over one-third of FDI inflows in 1998, are the other two countries. Furthermore, between 1991 and 1998, FDI inflows increased to a greater extent in 33 of Africa's least developed nations. Their percentage of all FDI inflows into Africa increased from 20% in the early 1990s to around 25% by 1998. A small group of nations, including Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Uganda, Tanzania, and Angola, are responsible for a large portion of the increase in accounting I990s. Natural resources, manufacturing, and services (in Ethiopia and Mozambique), as well as petroleum and natural gas, were among the industries that drew FDI (Angola).


France, the United Kingdom, the United States, and to a lesser extent Germany and Japan, have historically been the primary suppliers of FDI into Africa. Others, including Canada, Italy, and the Netherlands, have recently played a significant role in supplying this continent with FD1. ‘ Major investors in Africa in 1997 were the United States ($3.7 billion in first place), Belgium ($1.2 billion), the United Kingdom ($1.0 billion), and France ($600 million).


Namibia, Swaziland, Lesotho, and Mozambique are just a few of the neighbouring nations that Africa has invested in. Mauritius is another significant nation that spent about $900 million in India in the 1990s as investors benefited from the double tax avoidance pact between the two nations.


5. a) Africa’s debt crisis

Ans) An important question to ask is what are the causes of the current rise in the debt levels for Africa and whether the current economic conditions are the same as those that prevailed prior to the HIPC/MDRI initiatives and therefore the alarm bells should be sounded for an imminent debt crisis in Africa? Before we assess the drivers of the current rising levels of debt, we first tackle the second part of the question. As much there is a need for judicious management of Africa’s debt, there would not be the need for the ringing of the alarming bells loudly as Africa’s economic conditions are currently far better than the pre-HIPC years. Atta-Mensah (2015, 2017) argues that the economies of most African countries are currently embarking on transformation of their economies and are very sound that despite the severity of the global financial and economic crisis of 2007-2008, Africa did not deep into a recession but rather saw its economies significantly slowdown. The channels, through which the crisis affected Africa, included among others, plummeting trade, the drying-up of the flows of financial capital and remittances as well as threats of bank runs and weak financial intermediation. These negative influences caused Africa to register an average growth of 2 percent in 2007.


The positive performance of Africa is due to the solid policies of many African countries prior to the crisis. These policies, which inoculated the African economies against the severe ramification of the crisis included low-inflationary monetary stance, prudent fiscal management (strengthened budget positions, reduced debt burdens and reformed tax structure), and reasonable foreign currency reserve cushion. Improved fiscal position allowed countries to also use their budgets to counteract the crisis, rather than making it worse. Fiscal policy was therefore expectedly countercyclical in many African countries at the time of the crisis. It should be said that, the fiscal cushion helped a great deal to protect the poor and vulnerable as social spending was not cut during the crisis.


b) African experiences of globalization

Ans) Globalization will continue to reinforce the interdependencies between different countries and regions. It can also deepen the partnership between the advanced countries and the rest of the world. And to support this partnership in a mutually beneficial way, the advanced countries could help to further open their markets to the products and services in which the developing world has a comparative advantage. In addition, the reform efforts of the African countries will need to continue to be supported by adequate financing on concessional terms. In this regard, I am pleased to note that the Fund has put the ESAF, our concessional lending facility, on a permanent footing, so that it can continue to support reform efforts of the poorer countries, especially in Africa.


Moreover, the Fund and the World Bank have recently begun implementing the framework for action to resolve the external debt problems of heavily indebted low-income countries (HIPC), including their large multilateral debt. Three African countries--Burkino Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, and Uganda--are among the first countries to be considered under the Initiative. The challenge facing the developing world, and African countries in particular, is to design public policies so as to maximize the potential benefits from globalization, and to minimize the downside risks of destabilization and/or marginalization. None of these policies is new, and most African countries have been implementing them for some time.


African governments have also made considerable strides in opening their economies to world trade. A good indicator of this is the fact that 31 Sub-Saharan African countries have accepted the obligations of Article VIII of the Fund's Articles of Agreement, almost all of them since 1993. Most countries have moved ahead with trade and exchange liberalization, eliminating multiple exchange rates and nontariff barriers, and also lowering the degree of tariff protection.

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