Thursday, February 25, 2010

An increase in fragile states - Niger

The past few weeks have very eventful for the two African countries with closely spelled names, Niger and Nigeria. When news first broke about the coup in Niger, I was promptly misinformed of it. I proceeded to check the news on my phone only to be corrected (thank goodness because the prospect of a coup in Nigeria was scarier to me than a coup in Niger).

There has been a lot of talk in the past week about benevolent coups and their merit in restoring democracy. My take is as follows: if the people either by themselves or through the army do not feel they are being led in the manner in which they feel is best, then perhaps a benevolent coup is in order. Now don't get me wrong I am not advocating for the overhaul of governments when people are unhappy, but when the constitution and other legal safeguards have been violated then the people must ensure that their leadership follows the appropriate rules. After all, isn't democracy for the people, by the people, of the people?

What effect will Niger's government have on investment there? Most likely halt it until the army provides the world with a concrete plan on when democratic elections will be held and those plans are followed through. I have not heard of any investors leaving so that is a good sign.

I will definitely continue to keep my radar up for news from Niger.

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