Law, Politics, and the Quality of Government in Africa

Asongu, Simplice A. and Nwachukwu, Jacinta Chikaodi orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-2987-9242 (2016) Law, Politics, and the Quality of Government in Africa. Politics & Policy, 44 (5). pp. 916-944. ISSN 1555-5623

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This article examines interconnections between law, politics, and the quality of government in Africa. We investigate whether African democracies enjoy relatively better government quality (GQ) compared to their counterparts with more autocratic inclinations. The empirical evidence is based on instrumental variable two‐stage least squares and fixed effects with data from 38 African countries for the period 1994‐2010. Political regimes of democracy, polity, and autocracy are instrumented with income levels, legal origins, religious dominations, and press freedom to account for the GQ dynamics of corruption control, government effectiveness, voice and accountability, political stability, regulation quality, and the rule of law. Findings show that democracy has an edge over autocracy while the latter and polity overlap. As a policy implication, democracy once initiated should be accelerated to edge the appeals of authoritarian regimes.

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