chapter  4
21 Pages

An effective measure of institutional engineering? Ethnic party bans in Africa

ByAnika Moroff, Matthias Basedau

The widespread and strict regulations regarding political parties in sub-Saharan Africa, in particular legal provisions to ban ‘particularistic’ parties, are not easily reconciled with liberal democracy as party bans restrict the freedom of association. In sub-Saharan Africa, public discourse often justifies such measures by claiming that multiparty politics inevitably results in the politicization of ethnicity and other socially attributed identities, provoking intercommunal conflict and doing harm to the prospects of democracy.1