Mauritius the best-governed country in Africa, again

Mauritius has again, for the fifth year in a row, finished on top of the Ibrahim Index of African Governance.

Mo Ibrahim

Mo Ibrahim

The Index, compiled by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, supports good governance and leadership in Africa. The four categories of governance as assessed by the Index are: Safety & Rule of Law, Participation & Human Rights, Sustainable Economic Opportunity and Human Development.

From a total of 53 countries (Sudan was treated as a single country), Mauritius had the highest overall score. Somalia features at the bottom of the rankings. Southern Africa had the highest regional average, while Central Africa had the lowest.

Both Liberia and Sierra Leone showed a marked improvement in governance, whereas Madagascar registered a significant decline.

Mo Ibrahim said that although he is delighted about Africa’s economic growth, he is concerned about the stagnation, and in many cases the reversal, in the rule of law and citizens’ rights. “If economic progress is not translated into better quality of life and citizens’ rights, we will witness more Tahrir Squares in Africa.”

This year’s Ibrahim Prize was awarded to former Cape Verde President Pedro Verona Pires. The prize is awarded to a democratically elected former African head of  state who has served their term in office within the limits set by the country’s constitution, has left office in the last three years, and has demonstrated excellence in office. The winner receives US$5 million over 10 years and $200,000 annually for life thereafter. The prize has not been awarded for two years, apparently because of no suitable candidates.

2011 Ibrahim Index Country Rankings
RankCountryScore (out of 100)
2Cape Verde79
5 South Africa71
6 Namibia70
7 Ghana66
8 Lesotho63
9 Tunisia62
10 Egypt61
11 Benin60
12 São Tomé and Príncipe58
13 Tanzania58
14 Morocco58
15 Senegal57
16 Zambia57
17 Malawi57
18 Algeria55
19 Burkina Faso55
20 Uganda55
21 Mozambique55
22 Mali54
23 Kenya53
24 Gambia52
25 Rwanda52
26 Swaziland51
27 Gabon51
28 Libya50
29 Djibouti49
30 Sierra Leone48
31 Comoros47
32 Mauritania47
33 Madagascar47
34 Ethiopia46
35 Togo46
36 Liberia45
37 Burundi45
38 Cameroon45
39 Niger44
40 Congo42
41 Nigeria41
42 Angola41
43 Guinea38
44 Guinea-Bissau37
45 Equatorial Guinea37
46 Côte d'Ivoire36
47 Eritrea35
48 Sudan33
49 Central African Republic33
50 Democratic Republic of Congo32
51 Zimbabwe31
52 Chad31
53 Somalia8