Resolving the Crisis of Development in Africa

Sunday Olaoluwa Dada


The most important problem facing African countries, especially, those in South of Sahara, is the problem of Development. This problem has remained intractable because development strategists and governments of African countries have only focused on external factors that affect African development. Governments of African countries have been using Western prescriptions like liberalisation, privatisation and the transference of investment from industrialised countries in their attempts to resolve the crisis. However, there are internal issues that are responsible for the failure of African governments to deliver the promise of development. Using the conceptual analytic method, this paper attempts to explore internal issues such as corruption, insecurity and ethnic conflicts, dishonesty, disobedience to laws and disregard for the opinion of experts. It is argued that these issues bother on the loss of certain African cultural values and lack of social responsibility on the part of those in government. The paper suggests that the reappropriation of African values of community, cooperation, reciprocity, brotherhood embedded in the South African concept of Ubuntu provides a framework for resolving the crisis of development rocking Africa. The relevance of this framework lies in the fact that, although borrowing from East and West in terms of development models has the propensity to nurture African development. The sustenance of the acquired development will be undermined if adequate attention is not paid to the values that can sustain it. And since these values are ethical in nature, we argue that development requires sense of ethics. It is the sense of the ethical that propels the individual to cultivate a sense of social responsibility that can help in the African development crisis.


Development, Indigenous Values, Cooperation, Ethics, Ubuntu.

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