Society’s Contribution to Democratic Consolidation in Africa
Despite the fact that scholars such as Hegel and Alexis de Tocqueville
celebrated the role of civil society in the growth of liberal economies,
this concept remained in a paradigmatic blind spot for a long time thereafter.
Several reasons begin to contribute to this. In Europe, the crisis that
presently confronts the welfare state had not set in and socialist states
largely satisfied the (re-)distributive functions. Elsewhere, especially
in post-colonial Africa, people were prevented by a culture of silence
from making demands on or engaging the state, despite its glaring incapacity.
As a result, the state occupied the center stage in both the academy and
development field. Voices like those of Antonio Gramsci emphasizing the
importance of this concept were drowned or suffered from discursive marginalisation.
Dissatisfaction with the state set in as a result of the «maximax
problematique» where maximum available resources did not permit
the state to begin to satisfy minimal needs. This first became evident
in Eastern Europe. People therefore opted «to live with the truth»
rather to continue «living a lie» in the words of Vaclav Havel.
This option helped to bring back into sharp focus the concept of civil
society. Its centrality in development discourse could be discerned from
the fact that by 1995, the World Bank organized a retreat for its staff
in the Washington D.C. vicinity where they discussed the concept. Even
the International Monetary Fund (IMF) which is obsessed with macroeconomic
indicators has reluctantly accepted the heuristic value of this concept
But just as the emancipatory potential of civil society was being brought
into sharp relief, voices doubting its relevance in the African context
emerged. Emphasizing the historical context in which civil society emerged,
Jean Francois Bayart claims that «In Africa, there are no one-dimensional
or homogenous societies, but rather a collection of time-spaces like so
many poles, created by various social actors. The first uncertainty, therefore,
is whether there is any political possibility, let alone demographic,
economic or technological, of unifying these time-spaces for overcoming
their discontinuities, a possibility which requires the emergence of an
‘organizational principle’ capable of challenging absolute state control»
(2). History has proven Bayart wrong. Today, the problem in Africa is
not the lack but the possibilities of thickening civil society.
Granting this, there are still definitional problems to be overcome in
the African context. What does civil society mean? Just the other day
(26 November 1999), I heard a journalist from Radio South Africa on their
program "Channel Africa" claim that the soldiers had launched a full scale
attack on the Kivu province controlled by Jean Claude Mbemba. Supposedly,
they were killing members of civil society! This set me wondering whether
people carried any external markers to show that they belonged to this
society. No doubt, this inheres from the tendency in Africa to confound
society with civil society. Even states participate in the muddling of
this concept. In most post-colonial states, the discursive neutralization
of the population, that is their disempowerment, through the contraction
of political space enabled the state to give an operational definition
to this concept. In Cameroon, for example, during the Tripartite Conference
and the Constitutional Revision process, the representatives of civil
society were chosen by the state qua Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement
(CPDM). Surprisingly, the representatives were members of the CPDM. In
effect, they were in the state and civil society at the same time. But
Hegel and Gramsci conceive of civil society as a source of opposition
to the state. For de Tocqueville, civil society constituted autonomous
intermediate associations that could stop the state from arrogating to
itself more powers than the citizen were willing to grant it (3). Given
this definition of civil society as a counter weight to the state, the
practice of the Cameroonian state could not therefore be correct or be
seen only as a continuation of the unimodal mode of representation that
characterized the one party state. For the purpose of this paper, civil
society is defined as an «arena where manifold social movements…
and civic organizations from all classes… attempt to constitute themselves
so that they can express themselves and advance their interests’ (4).
Undoubtedly, this articulation and aggregation may involve engagement
with or disengagement from the state.
Today, I have been asked to talk on the decentralization and «responsabilisation»
of civil society in Africa. Seen against the backdrop of the foregoing
definition, I would state, ab initio, that I am not comfortable with the
formulation of this topic, since civil society may contribute to human
interconnections within a work unit but not necessarily between working
units. With a view to enhancing its effectiveness, one should be concerned
with giving that society a macro-dimension. Small is not always beautiful.
This being the case, it would therefore enable the African state that
still aspires to omnipotence to be a Leviathan and not just a lame one.
Emphasis should be on promoting «dialogic reciprocity which allows
for an enabling of validity claims, the non-coercive force of the better
argument (5). I believe that «responsabilisation» of whatever
group comes only as a result of the growth of this interactive competence.
That is why it is referred to as civil and is ipso facto responsible.
Denuded of its apparent innocence, this topic is grounded in a paternalistic
ethos that stands out in the biographic development of the African state.
It is this ethos that the common man is contesting. Given his decision
«to live with the truth», he is no longer part of the standing
reserve (6) to be used for instrumental value. Consequentially, he cannot
be relegated to the bottom of society’s symbolic ladder where symbolic,
if not physical violence can easily be meted out on him.
Not being privy to authorial intentions, I would want to assume that the
emphasis here was meant to be on the impact of the mode of state incorporation
on the recursive relationship, a mutually transforming relationship, which
exists between the state and society. Basically, there are two modes of
incorporation and, each producing a different effect on the state-society
relations. These are integrated domination with the state at the center
of relations, establishing a broad power and acting in a coherent fashion
and dispersed domination, that leads to a limited hegemony within an arena
as neither the state nor the any other social force achieves countrywide
domination and in which parts of the state may be pulled in different
directions (7). Focus on the mode of incorporation enables us to recover
the common man in the debate as the state no longer provides the prevailing
moral order. Reminiscent of Gidden’s theory of structuration, neither
the human agent nor the society or institutions have primacy in this relationship.
This paradigm, I believe takes us beyond that which anthromorphizes the
state, thereby giving it an ontological status, by portraying it as a
unitary and organic actor. In short, it enables a new anthropology of
the state as it permits us to disaggregate the state, investigating the
different levels where direct engagement with society occurs with a view
to determining how these multiple reactions contribute to stability/democracy.
Focusing on struggles in these multiple arenas or spaces that include
civil society as well as more limited arena conflicts would also lead
one to uncover the nature of the interaction between state and society.
For our present purpose, I am suggesting that the form of civil society
may differ with the mode of incorporation adopted by the state.
The foregoing, however, is not to deny that civil society at local levels
can begin to influence policy at the level. Its impact can be felt mostly
in the realm of socio-economic activity that affects the everyday lives
of people rather than in the political realm with which they engage only
on an episodic basis (8). Evidential of this is the decision of the Nso
people in Bui Division of the North-West Province in Cameroon to chase
the water authority (SNEC) out of this division. Following this they created
the Kumbo Water Authority (KWA) to manage the system. The state represented
by its frontline authorities seemingly acquiesced to this. Its failure
to impose its domination in this circumscribed arena deprived it of resources
and support that it could carry into other arenas of struggle. Conversely,
victory gave the people confidence to continue fraying away at the power
of the state, appropriating parts of it through a process of creeping
Several reasons account for this successful challenge to state authority.
Firstly, it can be explicated by the fact that front-line officials find
it easier to throw in their lot with the local people. Secondly, according
to some of these officials, they are interested not in politics but in
their paychecks that enable them to feed their families. Thirdly, and
above all, it is plausible that state concession is prompted by the fact
that these struggles at the margins are not considered as key struggles.
As such they do not readily spillover to other arenas, thereby contributing
to reformatting state-society interactions. But civil society has to engage
the state not only in marginal but also vital space. Granting this, any
attempt to privilege only decentralization would just help to exacerbate
some of these problems. As I see it, the emphasis should be on flexibility
that foregrounds both decentralization and shifting federations with a
view to benefiting from both the advantages of solidarity and scale.
The existence of civil society in Africa, it has been conceded, can be
traced back to the period of the colonial state. Though colonization was
basically a violating experience, it cannot be denied that it provided
opportunities for the African to acquire cultural capital necessary to
function within this state. Schools inculcated new values in the African.
Endowed with a double consciousness (African and European), as a result
thereof, he became a hybrid. Most voluntary associations such as labor
unions and professional associations formed during this period to protect
the interests of the African, exposed to the vicissitudes of the capitalist
economy, (for example commercialization and urbanization), were led by
these hybrids. Not surprisingly, these associations played a vanguard
role in protesting not only the indignities of colonial rule but in calling
Despite the motley nature of these associations, they worked collectively
for the independence of their states. Eric Hobsbawm notes that "there
is nothing like an imperial people to make a population conscious of its
collective existence". (10) However, the exit of the common enemy led
to the struggle for the control of the new states, now seen as a mode
of production. Because of this perception, the struggle for the leadership
that was recruited from among the associations formed in the colonial
period was fierce. The implications were disturbing, especially as Kwame
Anthony Appiah notes that independence left Africa with states looking
for nations. (11) But imagining a nation was difficult for the tribe or
ethnic group remained the «most effective socio-political agent
in Africa». (12) The resilience of ethnicity helped to fray social
relations in the mutli-ethnic states and thereby worked against the development
of civil society.
In this context, one witnesses a corruption of the spirit among the intellectuals
that played an instrumental role in nurturing civil society. That is,
they become organic intellectuals, more concerned with the politics of
the belly. This is the treason of the clerks. Granted, Bourdieu argues
that there is no one single role for the intellectual; considerations
of their economic and political interests determine their political takings.
In Africa, their identification with the state is reinforced by the fact
that only state, that is the sole source of employment can guarantee their
upward mobility. This consideration partly accounts for the inability
of the African intellectual to articulate an organizational principle
necessary for the development of a viable civil society.
As indicated above, ethnicity has helped to compound the problem as the
state is seen only through ethnic blinkers. That is, the leader of the
state who is its reification is always perceived as committed to promoting
a monoethnic tendency. Given this perception, intellectuals from his ethnic
group support him while those from other groups are more apt to promote
an oppositional consciousness. Since ethnicity is used as the legitimation
principle, it is not surprising that intellectuals in this context cannot
come up with an organizational principle for developing a viable civil
society. Debates are always displaced to this terrain.
Cameroon in the early 1990s can serve as a case in point. Instead of focusing
on the democratization process and the merits of the sovereign national
conference (SNC) in fostering the process, intellectuals traded accusations
among themselves for privileging ethnicity in the debate rather than examining
the normative superiority of this mode of governance. They became, in
the words of Ndiva Kofele Kale, ethnic entrepreneurs. Principally, two
schools of thought developed. On the one hand, Anglo-Bamilekes were accused
of fanning the flames of ethnofascism, which Mono Ndzana defined as the
auto-marginalisation of an ethnic group that subsequently mobilizes itself
for the conquest of political power while nursing sado-masochist intentions
toward the other. In reaction, the Bamilekes accused Ndzana and his colleagues
of Monofascism. Noteworthy is the fact that the church hierarchy and the
press were also divided along these same political fault lines.
In this context, attempts to refocus the debate by insisting that democratization
and the proposed SNC did not index any ethnic group but the «tribu
du ventre» did not have any political purchase. It is largely as
a result of this that programmatic issues have been relegated to the background
in the democratic debate in Cameroon.
Ere some of you begin to make apologies for ethnic groups, let me admit
that there is a flip side to this argument. Historical evidence shows
that they have also played a positive role in the development of civil
society in Africa. No one would fail to acknowledge their role in the
struggle for the first independence of Africa. Contradiction arise only
in the role that they have played in the post-colonial state. Bent on
capturing power that they see as a zero-sum game or accessing the state,
ethnic entrepreneurs have used these groups as a bargaining chip. Worse
still a look at current history shows that most political parties that
litter the African political landscape are no more than ethnic pressure
groups. Generally, they have failed to form cross-cutting associations
that would enable them to be seen as part of civil society that expresses
functional concerns. Focus on ethnic groups therefore reveals a contradictory
moment in the elaboration of the civil society project. Contradictory
moments are those in which the past expressions of civil society’s potential
are subsequently identified as their nemesis.
In the African context, the persistence of the economy of affection accounts
for this contradiction. Essentially, this means that traditional social
relations are rooted in the moral expectation that members of extended
families would support one another. The «invisible organizations»
in this network of mutual obligation may be difficult to discern to the
untrained eye because they are «ad hoc and informal rather than
regular and formalised". (13) As a result of this, public morality in
Africa can be characterized as «primordial» rather than «civic».
That is, it is derived from the particularistic values of the economy
of affection rather than from universalistic values embodied in constitutional
law and rational bureaucracy. Political actors tend to regard access to
the state as an opportunity for personal and community advancement. «A
person who can demonstrate generosity at public expense is not only forgiven
by his people but is also seen as having acted correctly». (14)
This mindset which celebrates the virtues of the politics of the belly
is certainly not an enabling condition for the development of civil society.
The lack of autonomous economic classes had impeded the development of
civil society in Africa. For the most part, the state provides only access
into the monetary economy. As everyone seeks to penetrate the state, a
true petty bourgeoisie (business) cannot develop. Since the nascent bourgeoisie
depends on the state for its economic survival, its energies are directed
toward capturing and maintaining state power. The state having been converted
into a mode of production, the class that has captured it is extremely
reticent to introduce new forms of political accountability required under
the democratic mode of governance. Their immediate interest is therefore
promoted by deterring rather than promoting the chances for political
competition. State predominance in the economic realm is not therefore
an enabling condition for the development of civil society. This is supported
by evidence, in Southern Africa and Nigeria for example, where the vibrant
civil society has developed as a result of a thriving private sector.
In some countries where civil society has developed, it has not undergone
a thickening process due to lack of funding. Associations have folded
because of poor organization and only a handful of committed people do
most of the work. Thus, these associations have failed to institutionalize
themselves. The Cameroon Public Servants Union (CAPSU) and the Cameroon
Union of Contract Officers and State Agents(SYNCAAE), are cases in point.
Formed in the early 1990s, these associations served as pressure groups
for state workers committed to improving their material conditions as
well as working for the introduction of a liberal-democratic system in
Cameroon. To this end, they deplored the drastic cut in salaries, decrying
that the accompanying measures designed to absorb the shock were «cosmetic»
«inadequate» «ineffective» and had no impact on
the miserable conditions of state employees». Intent on shaping
policy, they questioned whether the maintenance of a large cabinet with
over fifty ministers (the largest since independence) with fifteen generals
in peace time for a population of 12 million people and the creation of
multiple and unnecessary administrative units which call for more
expenditure for a government in time of crisis is sure proof that the
government has no financial crunch. (15)
Even if the state saw this declaration as having only a nuisance value,
the capability of the Unions to blackmail it became obvious in December
1993 when they called for a strike action. Unfortunately, CAPSU and SYNCAAE
did not have depth and resilience of a deeply structured organization.
Their vulnerability was mainly attributable to the liquidity squeeze that
they faced. No doubt, the reluctance of the members to pay their dues
contributed to this situation. The government was conscious of this fact
and therefore used symbolic violence, luring the leadership with money,
to penetrate the movements. And the first signs of defection among the
leadership prompted their demobilization. In apportioning blames, members
who had defaulted on the payment of their dues exonerated themselves while
putting the blame solely on their leadership.
Not even the trade union movement has been insulated from government interference
as was demonstrated in the case of the Confederation of Cameroon Trade
Unions(CCTU), despite its semblance of autonomy. That its independence
was a sham was proven when the government intervened in its electoral
process to make sure that Etame Ndedi, a member of the Central, Committee
of the ruling CPDM was elected as President. This went contrary to the
principle of functional representation that guarantees democratization
in the economic realm. His pre-occupation with protecting the strategic
interests of the party rather than the corporate interests of the workers
became apparent when he sacked Louis Sombes, the Secretary General of
the Union for supporting the December 1993 civil servants strike. Control
of this union that could have a stranglehold on the state was important.
With a view to guaranteeing this, the state promoted the creation of a
rival union. As the Minister of Territorial Administration stated in a
confidential note to the President of the Republic, «I think the
birth of this new trade union organization will help to counteract the
activities of the leaders of the CCTU who, in the majority, are members
of the radical opposition».(16) Though named the Union of Free Trade
Unions of Cameroon (USLC), its partisan coloration could easily be discerned
from the declaration of its Vice President, Salome Tsogo. «We are
going to fight tooth and nail to forestall the activities of the CCTU,
which is in the pay of the radical opposition and some United States backed
institutions» and «the success of the USLC will constitute
a victory for the CPDM». (17)
I am also skeptical of the effectiveness of civil society that functions
only at the local level because of the tendency of African states to confound
two concepts –decentralization and deconcentration of powers. Whereas
an examination of their constitutions may reveal to us something about
the nature of the states, I would submit it is more important to make
the distinction between what Weber referred to as the «ethic of
conviction» and the «ethnic of responsibility». The
former, foregrounds the good intentions of the agent rather than the results
of his actions whereas the latter focuses on results and not just good
intentions. In other words, our concern should be not with the constative
aspects of the constitutions but with its performative dimension. Contradictions
often occur as the pre-occupation of the policy makers move from one to
the other. It is as a result of this contradiction that power remains
at the center of the state, despite the commitment of most African states
A cursory examination of current practice reveals that despite the explosion,
if not inflation in the political grammar with the introduction of terms
such as regions, provinces, departments etc. power remains at the hands
of those at the center. And the role of the frontline officials in the
policy cycle is restricted to policy implementation. At this phase their
margin for manoeuvring is rather slim. Therefore, if civil society is
to have any inputs into the decision making process, it should be at the
level where the decisions are taken.
In the early phase of the democratization process, most people adhered
to it because of the promise or liberating possibilities. People were
de-energized as a result of the prohibitive costs of engaging with the
state. Engagement, I should observe took confrontational rather than non-obtrusive
modes. Incumbent regimes that were not convinced about the normative claims
of liberal-democracy or were privileged the politics of the belly fought
back ferociously. Not only did they kill people who challenged their authority
in public space, they even invaded private space with a view to enforcing
political conformity. Thus besides the economic costs incurred in engaging
with the state, there was also the loss of life. Consequently, most people
suffered from the rebound effect. That is, considering democracy as a
public good from which all would benefit whether they fought for it or
not, they did not see why they had to be actively involved in any struggle
for its introduction and consolidation. Already, they had given up so
much for so very little. Disillusionment leads to attitudinal change.
This consideration, for example, helps to explain why some Cameroonians
decided not to respect the villes mortes or operation dead towns as well
as its declining popularity as a popular mode of political action. Fatigue
simply set in. Others were deterred by the re-emergence of fear as an
idiom of social consciousness.
Democratization in Africa: Which Way Forward
This is a rather broad question and there are no clear answers for the
specific conditions in each country would impact on the process. I subscribe
to Plato theory of politics as articulated by Protagoras. It is narrated
through the myth of Zeus who via Hermes, gave human beings the techne
politike, a gift which renders them able to discuss and to deal with all
issues pertaining to their city, because it makes them able to be able
to judge between right and wrong. But more than this is required
in this particular circumstance. For the consolidation of democracy there
is a need for a civic culture which represents the patterning of how we
share a common space, common resources, and common opportunities and manage
interdependence in the «company of strangers» which constitutes
the public. In the context of the state, this requires subordinating the
state’s activities to proceduralized forms of public deliberation, which
in the view of Habermas would help to redesign the interface between state
and citizenry in a way that is less damaging and oppressive. This foregrounds
the role that civil society would have to play in the democratization
process. For this reason and reasons of parsimony, I would want to limit
my observations to the role that civil society can play in the giving
a new impulse, if not re-energizing the democratization process in Africa.
In the present political conjuncture, we are witnessing the right sizing
or retreat of the African post-colonial state as it is being forced by
the Washington consensus to disengage from the economic sector. Already
the inability of the state to act as an unbound Prometheus, providing
benefits to many organized groups has led to a more competitive and pluralistic
associational environment. Getting the state out of the economic realm
as prescribed in the Structural Adjustment Programs (SAP) will only
contribute to creating an enlarged political space within which associational
life can occur. This argument is informed by experience from elsewhere
where the loosening of regulations on economic production inevitably gives
rise to pressures for political liberalization and lessens dependence
on the state. In this new enabling environment, groups within civil society
will enjoy greater opportunities to attract a following, develop a bureaucratic
form and formulate policy alternatives.
But there is a flip side to this argument. If the state’s role in the
economy is restricted to providing an enabling environment, that would
also prevent it from providing social services such as (universal) education,
which is crucial in the development of civil society. It is as a result
of the lack of education that public morality in Africa continues to have
a primordial rather than a civic basis. Besides, education in Kierkegaard’s
view is a sine qua non for an existential revolution, that is the awakening
of human responsibility, spirit and reasoning that are important in the
recovery of the feeling of possibility. A continuous emphasis would have
to be put on education. Failing this, there is a strong probability that
an underclass would develop in Africa at this juncture of its history.
This class embraces a counterculture and is known for its apathy in issues
of public concern. Thus, for the purposes of consolidating democracy,
this trend would have to be reversed. Chances look bleak as even traditional
safety networks are disintegrating. Conscious of this fact, financial
institutions such as the World Bank have also put an equal emphasis on
the social dimensions of structural adjustment. Basic education constitutes
one of the components of this package.
As indicated above, people have been turned from participating in the
politics of civil society because it has so far privileged confrontational
modes. Whereas some people have shied away from this approach, let me
try to comfort their advocates by re-emphasizing their liberation potential.
With the passage of time, they would be distilled, refined and routinized
so that they become part of the accepted action repertoire. Takembeng,
for example was not created in the 1990s. But it was used effectively
for purposes of the struggle. In other words, I am positing that the protests
for democratization that occurred in Africa in the early 1990s would still
help to push the process forward. Aristide Zolberg posits that though
movements do not collapse the distance between the present and the future,
they shorten it and in that case can be seen as successful miracles. (18)
Leaders of these movements would disappear or would be eaten by their
own revolution, but parts of their message would be distilled into common
frameworks of public or private culture.
However, with a view to enhancing its bandwagon effect, civil society
may have to embrace unobtrusive modes of protest that lead to imaginative
accommodation between the state and civil society. Change of strategy
may become imperative as a result of the increasing congruence between
the objectives of the state and civil society. As African states retreat
from the economic realm, voluntary associations comprising part of civil
society would move in to take their place. As partners, this would place
them in good stead to begin to make new demands, even if this be political,
on this state.
So far, most groups in civil society have been multipurpose organizations
that have an explicit political agenda. But single-issue groups are forming.
Functional specification helps to increase their bargaining power of the
group. In Cameroon, the government’s response to the strike by the taxi
men can be seen as a case in point. Though prompted by a hike in the price
of fuel, they used the opportunity to air other grievances such as the
harassment by the police. This sort of issue linkage would help to increase
the political clout of this organization. Attempts by the state to blackmail
them were to no avail. This forced it to make concessions to this group.
And as I indicated above, concession in any realm frays away at the power
of the state.
Global forces at work would lead to a change in the political opportunity
structure. That is the consistent, but not necessarily formal or permanent
dimensions of the political environment that provide incentives for people
to undertake collective action by affecting their expectations of success
or failure. Theorists of the political opportunity structure emphasize
the mobilization of resources external to the group. (19) As concerns
civil society in Africa, I am proposing that this external resource would
obtain as a result of networking activities that the they would enter
into with groups outside of their borders. That together they would be
able to force the African lame Leviathan not to retreat from the path
of democratic reform is attributable to the fact life is breathed into
this state on a daily basis by the international community.
The efficacy of this strategy can be deduced from an examination of the
history of the recent past of Africa. In the struggle for Africa’s first
independence, one witnessed the omnibus tendency of groups as they did
not hesitate to federate in the face of the imperial powers. Today, Africa
stands at the threshold of its second liberation, not from colonial rule
but from the yoke of oppression put in place by the first generation leadership.
There is no doubt that this strategy would have the same impact. For as
John Dewey remarked the present is a continuously moving moment stretching
out a hundred years in both directions from here and now. Thus, the present
is always a present of the past. The future a future of this present.
The fact that liberalism (liberal-democracy) is the megatrend of the late
twenty century and is likely to be unchallenged by any other ism in the
twenty first century means that the budding civil society in Africa which
seeks to prop up this system would benefit from a lot of good will in
the rest of the world. As the nation state becomes anachronistic as a
result of the globalization (seen in this context as a force promoting
both homgenization and heterogenization), the problem solving capacity
of civil society in Africa would be enhanced if it federates with other
groups outside of the continent.
Cooperation among these groups may even be institutionalized as in the
case of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) where it has led to the
formation of international non-governmental organizations (INGOs). These
INGOs are involved in second track diplomacy (that is a back-up diplomacy
to intergovernmental organizations). The Beijing Declaration virtually
written by one of these groups can be held up as proof of its effectiveness.
As these groups would have an agenda similar to that of Western governments
(as can be inferred from the emphasis on good governance), they would
be able to force these governments to make sure that the political conditionality
clause written in most aid agreements is respected. Some may see this
as interference in the affairs of sovereign states. Indeed, it may even
look patronizing. But what morality can be used to condemn interference
in states where relations of force rather than of sovereignty exists?
On the contrary, I would see it through the eyes of Henry David Thoreau
who in A Plea for Captain John Brown justifies intervention as following:
«I pity the poor in bondage that have none to help them; that is
why I am here; not to gratify my personal animosity, revenge or vindictive
spirit. It is my sympathy with the oppressed and the wronged, that are
as good as you, and as precious in the sight of God». (20)
for example, Jan Aart Scholte (1998), «The IMF Meets Civil Society»,
in Finance and Development, September, Vol. 35, No. 3, pp. 42-45.
(2) Jean-Francois Bayart (1986), «Civil Society in Africa»
in Political Domination in Africa: Reflections on the Limits of Power,
ed. by Patrick Chabal, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p.133.
(3) Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, ed. by J.P. Mayer &
Max Lerner, New York: Harper & Row, 1966, p.175.
(4) see Alfred Stepan (1988), Rethinking Military Politics: Brazil and
the Southern Cone. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, pp. 3-4.
(5) Jurgen Habermas (1990), Moral Consciousness and Communicative Action,
trans. by Christian Lendhardt & Shierry Weber Nicholson, Cambridge,
Mass: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press, p.89. This is a condition
for communicative action central to Habermas’s reflexive democracy.
(6) Martin Heidegger (1977), «The Question of Technology»
in The Question Concerning Technology and Other Essays, New York: Harper
& Row, p.18.
(7) for a detailed discussion, see Nantang Jua (1997), «Spatial
Politics, Political Stability in Cameroon». A keynote address presented
at a Workshop on Cameroon: Biography of a Nation, at Amherst College,
Amherst, Mass., November 20-23, esp. pp. 4 & 18-21.
(8) This is an adaptation of the Brian Birch’s(1975) thesis. Birch argues
that people engage only in economic activity almost everyday of their
lives. See «Economic Models in Political Science: the Base of Exit,
Voice and Loyalty» in British Journal of Political Science, p.
(9) for a detailed discussion, see Nantang Jua (1997), op. Cit., esp.
(10) Eric Hobsbawm ( ), Nations and Nationalism
since 1780: Myth and Reality, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p.38.
(11) Kwame Anthony Appiah (1992), IN My Father’s House, Oxford: Oxford
(12) Mordechai Tamarkin (1996), «Culture and Politics in Africa:
Ethnicity, Rehabilitating the Post-colonial State» in Nationalism
and Ethnic Politics, Vol. 2, No. 3, Autumn, p.360. Samora Michel noted
on this score that «for the nation to live the tribe must die».
(13) Goran Hyden (1980), Beyond Ujamaa in Tanzania: Underdevelopment and
the Uncaptured Peasantry, Berkeley: University of California Press, p.9.
(14) Ibid, p.38
(15) Cited in Cameroon Post, No. 01q98, 17 January 1994, p.10.
(16) cited in The Diasporan, No. 001, 14 April 1995, p.5.
(17) in Ibid.
(18) Aristide Zolberg (1972), «Moments of Madness» in Politics
and Society, 2, p.206.
(19) See Sidney Tarrow (1994), Power in Movement, Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, p. 85.
(20) See Lee A. Jacobus (1983), A World of Ideas, New York: St. Martin’s
Press, p. 159.
The ideas and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author
and do not necessarily reflect the views of UNESCO.
Les idées et opinions exprimées dans cette article sont
celles de l'auteur
et n’engagent pas la responsabilité de l´UNESCO.