A decade-long upward trend in African citizens’ demand for democracy has ended with a downward turn since 2012, according to a new Afrobarometer analysis. But despite these warning signs of a democratic recession, public demand for democracy remains higher than a decade ago, and most Africans still say they want more democracy than they’re actually getting – a good basis for future democratic gains.
One important factor: the quality of elections. African countries with high-quality elections are more likely to show increases in popular demand for democracy. These findings are part of a new report titled “Do Africans still want democracy?”, published on 22 November by Afrobarometer, the world’s premier source of reliable data on public perceptions and attitudes across Africa.
This is the 15th of Afrobarometer’s global releases of new findings from its Round 6 surveys (2014/2015) of almost 54,000 citizens in 36 African countries.
The first 14 (available at http://globalreleases.afrobarometer.org) focused on citizens’ top policy and investment priorities, infrastructure development, lived poverty, tolerance, electricity, water/sanitation, health, the news media, regional integration, political and civic engagement of African youth, trustworthy institutions, election management, performance of elected representatives, and perceptions of China in Africa. You can follow our global release and the discussions they generate on social media using #VoicesAfrica.