Original Research

Culture and Its Role in Promoting Democracy and Good Governance in Africa: Finding the Missing Link

C. Justine Igbokwe-Ibeto, Ngozi Ewuim, Florence Agbodike
Africa’s Public Service Delivery & Performance Review | Vol 3, No 1 | a76 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/apsdpr.v3i1.76 | © 2015 C. Justine Igbokwe-Ibeto, Ngozi Ewuim, Florence Agbodike | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 November 2016 | Published: 01 March 2015

About the author(s)

C. Justine Igbokwe-Ibeto, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria
Ngozi Ewuim, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria
Florence Agbodike, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nigeria

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The paper examines the role of culture in promoting democracy and good governance in Africa. It also explores the concepts surrounding an optimal governance arrangement for cultural and democratic institutions and the challenges current arrangements have on organizational governance and structures to deliver optimal and effective outcomes. The paper argues that for culture to promote democracy and good governance, actions should be taken towards cultural re-orientation with the aim of making it useful to our democracy and governance. The emphasis on humanity and personhood finds expression in several African maxims. Regrettably, the culture of individualism and primitive accumulation of wealth have dislocated humanity and personhood in Africa. We therefore, recommend among others, that communalism, high moral order in governance, community and state relations based on duties and obligations of the people to the state, deep sense of hard work and self-reliant, even as they embrace best practices from outside the continent of Africa. With these and other steps if implemented will launch the continent on the path of democratization and good governance by retrieving and showcasing its uniqueness as a people with deep sense of history and pride.


Culture; Democracy; Good Governance; Service Delivery; Sustainable Development


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