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Sub-Saharan Africa Essay

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Updated: Dec 23rd, 2019

The Civil War

In Sub-Saharan Africa, there is a high rate of in-fighting within the different countries. The existence of different ethnic groups causes conflicts. The groups usually fight for control and power since the leaders tend to favor their ethnic tribes over the others.

This happened in Ivory Coast, when people who were supporting the incumbent president Gbagbo fought against those supporting the opposition leader Ouattara, who won the elections.

The same also happened in Kenya where the incumbent president Mwai Kibaki, refused to give up power in an election marred with numerous electoral irregularities acknowledged by the electoral commission.

This led to post election violence that led to the death of more than one thousand people. Sierra Leon has been in the Civil War since 1991 while the Congo has been in the Civil War since 1994 during the Rwanda genocide.

Political Turmoil

Electoral irregularities are rampant in sub-Saharan Africa, which lead to political turmoil. This is because the incumbent leaders do not accept defeat. Hence, they refuse to give up power and force coalitions with their opponents as in the case of Kenya and Zimbabwe.

In Kenya, cases of rigging, voter bribery and election violence marred the electoral process. The electoral commission of Kenya favored the incumbent president Mwai Kibaki and declared him the winner amidst protests.

The commission also acknowledged the irregularities; this led post-election violence due to discontentment among voters. After negotiations, the opposition leader Raila Odinga agreed to form a coalition government with Kibaki.

A similar case occurred in Zimbabwe that forced Morgan Tsvangirai to form a coalition with the President Robert Mugabe after the closely contested election. In Ivory Coast, during the 2010 elections, the incumbent president Gbagbo refused to give up power leading to violence between supporters of the two groups.


The oil exploitation in Nigeria happens to benefit only the drilling companies and the political leaders. It does not benefit the local communities due to unequal distribution of wealth, promoted by the high levels of corruption among the oil companies and politicians.

In Kenya, the sitting president tends to favor his or her community when it comes to government appointments and project development.

In Sierra Leone, the Revolutionary united front as accused the government on numerous occasions for mismanagement of funds that have since plunged the country into poverty despite the presence of diamond deposits.

The President of Zimbabwe, Mugabe, took land forcefully from the minority white settlers and distributed them among his African cronies. Those given lands could not match the previous agricultural production capacities by the whites thus making the country unable to sustain itself.

Food crisis

Most of the countries faced with the food crisis in sub-Saharan Africa are on the horn of Africa that is Kenya, Somalia and Ethiopia. This is due to severe drought experience in the region that does not favor agriculture. The countries are totally dependent on agriculture thus worsening the food crisis when there is a drought.

There is a lack of appropriate measure to curb the food crisis; this is due to the lack of enough funds at the regional level to come up with projects to improve the level of food production.

Instability in the region caused by the presence of the militia group in Somalia known as Alshabab also promotes food shortage by preventing aid from reaching the people. The governments of the countries in the region also fail to act on predictions of such a calamity.

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"Sub-Saharan Africa." IvyPanda, 23 Dec. 2019, ivypanda.com/essays/sub-saharan-issues/.

1. IvyPanda. "Sub-Saharan Africa." December 23, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/sub-saharan-issues/.


IvyPanda. "Sub-Saharan Africa." December 23, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/sub-saharan-issues/.


IvyPanda. 2019. "Sub-Saharan Africa." December 23, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/sub-saharan-issues/.


IvyPanda. (2019) 'Sub-Saharan Africa'. 23 December.

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