This article analyses the commonalities and differences between African anglophone and francophone security systems in the context of security sector reform.
Although each country has a distinct political history and tradition, similarities in the security apparatus, rooted in its inheritance from the colonial and post‐colonial periods, can be found in both sets of countries. Identifying better ways to harmonise the SSR programmes being implemented all over the African continent requires a deep understanding of the similarities and differences which exist between African countries that belong to different linguistic areas and inherited from colonial rule. Security governance has been improving in an important number of anglophone countries over the last few years, while Francophone African countries are usually presented as not having experienced any significant transformation in security governance. Influencing factors of relative success or failure include institutional patterns; decision‐making structures; type of defence and police forces; and training capacities.
This article comes from the IDS Bulletin 43.4 (2012) Security Systems in Francophone and Anglophone Africa