Consolidating democratic governance in southern africa botswana
Many SADC countries have undergone transition to a liberal multiparty democracy, but reversals to authoritarian forms of governance cannot be ruled out. Its instrumental value should be felt by the people through sustainable human development. It uses a four-pronged typology of political regimes classified as authoritarian regimes, electoral authoritarianism, electoral democracy and liberal democracy. It found that the majority of SADC member states have undergone democratic transitions from autocratic regimes of the past, although it is not certain that these transitions are sustainable and irreversible. Chapter 7 analyses the economy, assessing in particular its contribution to the consolidation of democratic governance. The government enjoys surplus revenue from diamonds and ploughs this back into the economy and society. In contrast, factional rivalries within the ruling party contain the potential of a parliamentary revolt against the executive.
To balance this view, however, it must be pointed out that many Batswana remain poor and in need of the benefits of substantive economic change. In contrast, factional rivalries within the ruling party contain the potential of a parliamentary revolt against the executive. Numerous devaluations and the introduction of value added tax have worsened the condition of ordinary people, compelling parliament to reign in the executive and to review taxes on some consumer goods. It delves into the factors that explain the situation and what is needed for transition to occur. Kenneth Good in has been singled out as an indicator of authoritarianism in Botswana, while other observers have noted a weak parliamentary system, a weak party system and a weak civil society. The incidence of judiciary activism and the notion of legal precedence have ensured that the courts have initiated the introduction of legal practices in situations where parliament and the executive were reluctant to do so. The laws defining the powers of the judiciary and its practice give the positive impression of a competently independent institution which holds the executive, parliament, the bureaucracy and local government accountable. Many SADC countries have undergone transition to a liberal multiparty democracy, but reversals to authoritarian forms of governance cannot be ruled out. It found that all the country studies showed progress and faced challenges in transition and democratisation in the following four thematic areas: The BDP has retained state power since independence, with the first-past-the-post electoral system working to its advantage. In addition, local representation is male dominated. Chapter 5 examines some of the following questions: Political parties have engineered democratic consolidation in Botswana. Chapter 7 on the economy and corporate governance by Dorothy Mpabanga argues that economic growth rates have been consistently high and that the government has actively intervened in the economy to open up space for the private sector. It is part of a larger study on consolidating democratic governance in Southern Africa. The diversity of the groups which participated in drawing up the vision and in its implementation indicates inclusivity of the political system. The study is informed by the widely accepted principles of democracy - political control, political equality and socio-economic equality. What form does citizen participation take in the case of Botswana and what is the role of civil society in citizen participation? The SADC region has made strides towards democratic governance but still faces numerous democratic deficits that need serious attention if democratic consolidation is to occur and endure. The challenge facing these countries is to transcend this democratic model and aim to adopt and foster a developmental or social democracy. Chapter 5 on citizen participation by David Sebudubudu argues that trade unions, women and youth organisations, human rights organisations, and the print and electronic media have played a leading role in enhancing democratic governance. This could be argued to be an illustration of the operation of a mature democracy. Such accountability places parliament in a position to be the final legislative authority over the government system. However, the predominance of one party and the existence of a weak opposition, combine to weaken the capacity of parliament. It found that the majority of SADC member states have undergone democratic transitions from autocratic regimes of the past, although it is not certain that these transitions are sustainable and irreversible. Democracy in SADC means much more than the mere act of electing leaders every so often.
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