Ghana has again found itself among the top ten best governed in Africa out of the continentâ€™s 53 countries.
According to the annual Index of African Governance report released by Harvard Universityâ€™s Kennedy School of Governance, Mauritius, Seychelles and Cape Verde, all small islands are the continentâ€™s three best governed countries. At the bottom of the list are Chad, Sudan and Somalia.
When the report was first published in 2007, Ghana stood at the 8th position, making the current position an improvement from the first.
For the first time the index included North African countries and Tunisia and Algeria were in the top ten. Even though, Tunisiaâ€™s human rights record has been described as â€˜appallingâ€™ the country is noted to rate so well in terms of human development, economic opportunity and security, which scores compensated for the human rights record.
South Africa, however, slipped from fifth to ninth. The report noted that that was due to the countryâ€™s low scores in the areas of respect for civil and political rights and the rule of law.
Zimbabwe ranked 45 out of the 53 nations surveyed. Top oil producers Angola and Nigeria landed at 46 and 38.
The data for this survey was collected in 2007 and therefore, the election related violence of 2008 in Zimbabwe was not covered.
The survey is funded by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation of the wealthy Sudanese telecom investor by that name. He is expected to release his own version of the report next week.
The 2009 Index of African Governance used 57 indicators, including maternal mortality, gross domestic product per capita, respect for human rights and judicial independence, to rate governance in the continentâ€™s 53 nations. It was coordinated by Robert Rotberg and Rachel Gisselquist.
The authors have said in a statement, â€œBettering the lives of all of Africaâ€™s peoples is the overriding purpose of the index,â€ adding, â€œBy noting which indicators lag and which have advanced, governments can improve the outcomes for their populations.â€
Source: By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi/GBN