African Social Science Review
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Open Access journal
ISSN (Print) 1521-6667
Published by Kennesaw State University [9 journals]
- Editorial Matter
Authors: Andrew I.E. Ewoh
Abstract: Editorial matter for African Social Science Review, vol. 6, issue 1, Spring 2013.
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:18 PDT
- The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church in the Diaspora: Expansion in the
Midst of Division
Authors: Walle Engedayehu
Abstract: The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (EOTC) has expanded considerably during the last two decades throughout the globe in the midst of turbulence caused by the division within the Patriarchate. Focusing on the Diaspora EOTCs, this article discusses critically the causes that gave way to the split within the Church into two Holy Synods—one in Ethiopia and the other in North America—while setting apart some of the major social, political and economic dynamics that contributed to both the division and expansion. The paper contends that the Ethiopia‟s government intervention in the Church‟s affairs has been at the heart of the problem, and thus the division within the Church is a consequence of the ethnically-politicized social milieu that the regime has created since it came to power in 1991. Quintessentially, the schism within the Diaspora EOTCs into three types—affiliated with the Exiled Synod, affiliated with the Home Synod and neutral has been the most visible manifestation of the forces at work in Ethiopia. The paper concludes that the Holy Synod in North America must find ways to embrace all Diaspora EOTCs, especially those that are neutral, until such time that the unity of the Church is guaranteed once again at some foreseeable future.
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:16 PDT
- Do Pluralist Power Structures Enhance Involvement in Decision-Making by
Authors: Simon H. Okoth
Abstract: Previous studies conducted in the United States show that pluralist power structures lead to greater involvement by organized groups in issue-areas that affect communities. Given that pluralism is a procedural theory, broad stakeholder involvement thus depends on the effectiveness of the power structures. This article uses the Nile Basin Initiative project in Ethiopia, as case study, to explore the extent to which the presence or absence of pluralist structures influence involvement by nongovernmental stakeholders in the decision processes that affect shared water use. Analyses of qualitative data show that while theoretically the presence of pluralist power structures broadens stakeholder involvement, in practice it is not a sufficient condition. It is further observed that despite certain similarities in the way pluralism is defined and structured, the manner in which the pluralist power structures function depend on the degree of democratic openness at any given time and context.
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:14 PDT
- Interests and Identities in Peace Negotiations: Nigeria, Cameroon, and the
Authors: Rebecca K. LeFebvre
Abstract: For close to fifty years, the territorial dispute between Nigeria and Cameroon continued over the region along their border known as the Bakassi peninsula. The dispute almost led to war in the mid-1990s, was settled by the International Court of Justice in 2002, and resulted in hand-off of the territory by Nigeria to Cameroon in 2008. Content analysis of newspapers from Nigeria and Cameroon for the year 2010 revealed underlying identity-based needs that had been left largely unaddressed. Analysis of Nigerian newspapers showed a prevalent discussion of unfulfilled identity needs and an unresolved identity-conflict potential. Analysis of Cameroonian newspapers revealed the fulfilling of a new identity as the Bakassi region was proactively populated with Cameroonian citizens, culture, and connectivity to the rest of the country. The Bakassi dispute resolution was heralded as a success by state leadership, but it was not perceived in the same way by the general population as evidenced in the content analysis. Public opinions expressed in the media were less reflective of a cooperative result and more reflective of a zero-sum negotiation result with a clear winner and a clear loser.
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:13 PDT
- African Immigrant Women in the United States: Perceptions on Female
Circumcision and Policies that Outlaw the Practice
Authors: Lucinda M. Deason et al.
Abstract: Harmful traditional practice, such as female circumcision (FC) performed on children causes minimal to severe health problems. FC violates the human and medical informed consent rights of female children. African immigrants from communities that practice FC are required to comply with policies that outlaw FC. The purpose of this study is twofold: 1) to gain an understanding of African immigrant women‟s views on FC and policies that outlaw the practice, and 2) to provide new insights and identify effective strategies for improving compliance with anti-FC laws. A phenomenological approach was deployed to gain an understanding of African immigrant women‟s perceptions of FC and policies that outlaw it. The results indicate that the participants want to eradicate FC; yet some of them vacillate between eradication of FC and participation in the practice.
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:12 PDT
- Rural-Urban Differences in the Utilization of Maternal Healthcare in
Ghana: The Case of Antenatal and Delivery Services
Authors: Gloria Afful-Mensah et al.
Abstract: Although maternal health in Ghana has generally improved over the past two decades, the current MMR implies that Ghana‟s MMR is approximately 2.4 times higher than the set target in MDG 5. Using data from the Ghana Demographic and Health Survey 2008, an attempt is made in this study to investigate the rural-urban differences in maternal health care (antenatal and delivery care) service utilization in Ghana. Most previous studies focused more broadly on the utilization of MHC services either in the entire country or some parts of the country. This study fills the gap by looking at women from the rural and urban areas with varying standards of living and other socioeconomic attributes. The study also includes some women autonomy variables to find out their effect on MHC service utilization in both areas. Lastly, an attempt is also made to investigate the effect of informal education on the use of MHC services using a logistic regression model. The results from the rural sample show that, women with some degree of autonomy are more likely to use MHC services than their counterparts who lack such autonomy. Again, informal education through the media is more effective in the rural areas than in the urban areas, and wealth still remains an issue particularly in the urban areas.
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:10 PDT
- The Bush Administration, Democracy Promotion and Elections in Africa
Authors: George K. Kieh Jr.
Abstract: Since the emergence of the United States as a major global power, it has claimed to be the “leader of the free world” and the “champion of democracy.” During the Cold War, the pro-democracy rhetoric was a major staple on the United States‟ foreign policy menu. For example, the U.S. claimed that its support for democracy and the former Soviet Union‟s endorsement of authoritarianism was the main distinguishing feature between the ideological-political systems of the two superpowers. Thereafter, each succeeding American administration recited the pro-democracy rhetoric, which was elevated to new heights during President George W. Bush‟s second term. In his Second Inaugural Address, Bush declared the pursuance of a “freedom agenda” as a major cornerstone of American foreign policy. Using four allied African states of the United States—Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda—and an adversarial state—Zimbabwe—as case studies, this article examines the relationship between the rhetoric of “democracy promotion” through the holding of free and fair elections and praxis. In other words, how did the Bush administration respond to fraudulent elections in its allied and adversarial states, against the backdrop of its policy rhetoric through the promotion of democracy globally?
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:09 PDT
- Questioning the Constitutionality of Sharia Law in Some Nigerian States
Authors: Chinelo Okekeocha et al.
Abstract: In 2000, Governor Sani Ahmed of Zamfara State introduced an Islamic law popularly known as Sharia in his state and eleven other northern states immediately followed suit. He opined in his defense that the Nigerian constitution gave the states an implied power to enact such law, thus rekindling a contentious debate on the role of religion in the country. The analysis begins with an examination of the constitutionality of the Sharia law and its consequences on citizens where such law operates. This is followed by an explication of reactions in Sharia states and the federal government‟s concern about the issue at stake. In sum, the article concludes with some policy implications of the Sharia law in a few northern states in the country.
PubDate: Thu, 23 May 2013 10:26:08 PDT
- The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia: Liberal Democratic or
Authors: Solomon Terfa
Abstract: The leaders of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia adopted their constitution on December 8, 1994. This analysis argues that the ethno-linguistic federal political system adopted by the founding members is problematic because the framers superimposed the constitution on the citizens dogmatically without thoroughly examining the country’s objective reality. Hence, the author contends that the ethnic federalist paradigm adopted in Ethiopia is diametrically opposed to the wishes and aspirations of the people as validated by a survey he conducted between 1992 and 1993. He draws from this, perhaps the first and only study on this pertinent topic, to argue his case. The author also argues that the framers excluded the citizens from being represented at the constitution drafting convention by bona fide experts because they knew the people would neither be amenable to nor supportive of the political agenda the framers had designed. This reinforces the mutual mistrust between the citizens and the government. Inevitably, authoritarian rule was established.
PubDate: Wed, 16 May 2012 10:14:01 PDT
- Editorial Matter
Authors: Andrew I.E. Ewoh
Abstract: Editorial matter for African Social Science Review, vol. 5, issue 1, Spring 2012.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:43 PDT
- News Media and Environmental Policy: The Case of the Niger Delta Crises
Authors: Onimi Wilcox et al.
Abstract: The article examines the Nigerian media coverage of the devastation and environmental impact of decades of oil spills in the Niger Delta. Using the agenda setting approach as a conceptual framework, the analysis aims to uncover the role played by the media in the environmental policy process. The article begins with a discussion of the modus operandi of various media outlets in reporting the nature and scope of oil spill. This is followed by a review of the national government’s effort in managing and reducing the incidents of oil spill on the environment and the affected communities. On the basis of issues identified, the analysis offers some recommendations for all the actors involved in the environmental policy, and concludes by encouraging the media to continually publicize the causes and consequences of oil spill to mobilize the citizens to petition the federal government to enact good regulatory policies to contain environmental degradation of the Delta region.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:42 PDT
- Engaging Thaba Tseka Young People in Lesotho Public Service Activities:
Paray High School Drama Group Case Study
Authors: Mpho Letima et al.
Abstract: Public service is not only the responsibility of governments. For-profit and nonprofit organizations are major providers of public goods and services, as are citizens in their respective different capacities. The community as co-producer or primary provider of public service is an increasing phenomenon. The concept of “Citizen Driven Government” describes this practice in public administration. Prevalent instances of citizen driven government are found in the areas of health, education, crime reduction and gender sensitization. This paper elaborates on the role of youth in the delivery of a community driven public service for the Thaba–Tseka district in Lesotho. It describes their participation in planning, designing and implementing of a drama project to enhance knowledge and change behavior surrounding the HIV/AIDS pandemic.Qualitative and quantitative results presented in this analysis reveal the impact of the community-youth-driven initiative. The active participation and discussion on issues, facilitated by their use of drama, improved openness, confidence, open communication between peers, youth and adults surrounding HIV/AIDS. This improvement in communication represents transformative behavior for a culture where silence and limited openness about sexual issues (HIV/AIDS in particular) are presumed to be protective of the youth and too embarrassing for adults. This level of public service in Lesotho by these young people was in essence an extension of what the Ministry of Health, Education and Youth Sports and Gender were tasked to do. In conclusion, this analysis argues for more youth driven activities in an era where governments have limited resources and are relying more on citizens as co-producers of public goods and services.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:40 PDT
- Lethargic Policymaking: The Case of Gender Quota Legislation in Kenya
Authors: Mercy K. Dena
Abstract: Governments around the world have in recent years, increased the numbers of women legislators through gender quotas. Kenyan women inched closer to the glass ceiling when a new constitution in 2010 guaranteed them 13 percent representation in the parliament. Kenya currently stands at 10 percent women representation, which is significantly lower than neighboring countries Uganda, Tanzania, and Rwanda, that stands at above 30 percent. Using the theory of representative bureaucracy by Krislov and Rosenbloom (1981), and Kingdon (2003) concept of agenda setting and the policy process, this analysis delineates past government policies and analyzes the constitutional process encompassing gender quota legislation. This research utilizes multiple secondary and archival datasets such as government reports, academic and professional publications, news articles, and statistical agencies’ reports. Findings show that the Kenya government is slow in increasing women representation because political, cultural, and ideological structures continue to pose obstacles in policymaking.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:38 PDT
- Styles of Foreign Assistance: Policy Transfer and Domestic Development in
Sub-Saharan African States
Authors: Kelechi A. Kalu
Abstract: With the end of the Second World War in 1945, Official Development Assistance (ODA) mainly from the United States went to formerly industrialized European countries to help rebuild their war-torn infrastructures and societies. By the 1950s, Asian countries and societies such as Japan, South Korea and Taiwan became major recipients of US and other international aid as support for institutional and economic development. At that time, development in many African states was the responsibilities of the colonial powers that had political and economic management responsibilities in the colonial territories. With decolonization starting in 1957 and accelerating in the 1960s in sub-Saharan Africa, and at the height of the Cold War, foreign assistance to the region was mainly as support to governments on the basis of their ideological proclivities rather than for institution building and economic development. With the end of the Cold War, the use of foreign assistance as a tool of foreign policy has not changed, but countries like Japan, China and South Korea have joined the club of donor nations in the international system. The question becomes: to what extent are these new donors likely to change the game of foreign assistance to achieve better economic development results than Western aid donors in Africa' This paper examines the hypothesis that to the extent that Western and Asian donors continue the practice of policy transfers that use funding decisions and implementations based on Western and Asian experiences devoid of policy lessons from domestic realities, foreign assistance will remain ineffective as a significant tool for economic development and growth in Africa. The bulk of the paper will focus on a comparative analysis of foreign assistance and policy outcomes in Nigeria and Zambia.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:36 PDT
- Liberal Economics, Governance, and Official Development Assistance:
Empirical Comments on Theoretical Themes
Authors: Kalu N. Kalu
Abstract: This study presents a comparative analysis of the relative impact of official developmental assistance/foreign aid (ODA) that was given by the OECD countries to select developing countries of the South (sub-Saharan Africa) during the last decade of the Cold War (1980-1990), and the immediate Post-Cold War period (1990-2002). Firstly, this study seeks to illuminate the specific role of foreign aid and its contributory effect in the economic growth and development of these countries between the two time periods, and secondly, delineates specific institutional and governance problems and how these militate against a more effective application of foreign aid or official development assistance. Findings from the data analysis indicate that ODA had no noticeable effect on economic growth as measured by average annual percentage change in GDP growth. While inflation had a negative effect on annual GDP growth during the last decade of the Cold War, it was relatively inconsequential in the period following the end of the Cold War. Only the human development index had a positive impact on annual GDP growth during the post-Cold War years (1990-2002) –suggesting that sub-Saharan Africa countries would need to develop a more robust institutional capacity and human capital skills as a prerequisite for aid effectiveness.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:34 PDT
- Strategically Sustaining People's Well-being: The Case of Ghanaian
Women and Children
Authors: George O. Assibey-Mensah
Abstract: A government’s commitment to an adopted policy may be the first step that symbolizes its genuine intent to ameliorate the living conditions of its people, particularly the relevant and/or beneficial populations for which the policy was formulated. Ghana’s President J. A. Kufuor’s New Patriotic Party government ended decades of debate about improving the conditions of the vulnerable group of women and children by establishing the Ministry of Women and Children’s Affairs. This article argues that, in order for the Ghanaian government to sustain efforts to effectively improve the plight of this group, there should be systematic mechanisms that include effective collaboration via sustainable-development, learning-organization, and knowledge-management philosophies. The study provides lessons that have implications for developing economies.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:33 PDT
- Living without the State: A Rear View Mirror of Nigeria's 50 Years of
Authors: Emmanuel Olugbade Ojo et al.
Abstract: The purpose of this analysis is twofold. First, it undertakes a critical review of Nigeria’s performance within the five decades of its nationhood. Second, it compares its performance vis-à-vis a number of new states which started almost at the same time in both Africa and Asia using basic economic and political indicators. The article, however, infers that Nigerian political-economic performance is appalling, which has subjected citizens to living almost without the state in all ramifications. For a balanced view, the analysis argues that although there are few giant strides in terms of educational development and reduction in infant mortality as a result of improved health facilities, the gap between intent and actual practices is still very wide. The analysis recommends that the policymakers should visualize the next five decades and formulate appropriate reforms so that Nigeria may not eventually become a failed state.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:31 PDT
- Resource Control and the Rise of Militia in the Nigerian Delta Region
Authors: Chux Ibekwe et al.
Abstract: The struggle for resource control in the Niger Delta area of Nigeria has been energized following decades of total neglect of the oil producing region. Since oil in this region contributes substantially to the nation’s economy, many would have expected that the cow that produces the milk will be well fed. Nonetheless, the region is poorly neglected in terms of infrastructural development, environmental protection, and worst of all, human development. This analysis examines why the non-state actors want the control of oil resources in the Niger Delta region, how the conflicting parties have pursued their demands, the effect of the conflicts on the region, Nigeria, and the international community. In sum, the analysis concludes with some policy recommendations for solving the conflict.
PubDate: Tue, 15 May 2012 12:57:29 PDT
- Editorial Matter
Authors: Andrew I. E. Ewoh
Abstract: Editorial matter for African Social Science Review vol. 4, no. 1.
PubDate: Wed, 28 Apr 2010 06:08:34 PDT
- Rediscovery of Limited-Purpose Policing in East Africa: The Case of the
National Parks and Wildlife Services
Authors: James S. E. Opolot
Abstract: The rediscovery of limited-purpose wildlife police units in East Africa—Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda—has slowly but steadily gained attention of criminologists and law enforcement experts in Africa. This article traces some strands of this development. It does this by critically reviewing the literature on both the regular, traditional policing, and the special-purpose wildlife police units. The review clearly demonstrates several criminological concerns such as limited utilization of concepts, theories, and paradigms as gleaned from the literature on regular, traditional policing and special-purpose wildlife police units; unavailability of relevant information and data in the gray areas; and suggests the adoption of community policing concept as a solution to this problematic situation for a comprehensive police reform.
PubDate: Wed, 28 Apr 2010 06:08:33 PDT