As one of Tanzania’s most important economic sectors and sources of foreign investment, tourism provides widespread opportunities for rent seeking and patronage activities among politicians. This trend is epitomised in the government’s relationship with the Otterlo Business Corporation (OBC), whose almost three-decade tenure in Tanzania has been plagued by allegations of corruption, human rights abuses and illicit hunting practices.
Under the guise of corporate social responsibility (CSR), Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, has begun using his cement company to rehabilitate some of Nigeria’s federal roads using concrete. One of the most high-profile of these projects centres on a large section of the road network around Lagos’s ports. But while ostensibly a philanthropic endeavour, it is undoubtable that Dangote himself serves to profit from this scheme.
In May 2018, President Buhari signed a law reducing the age of candidacy for several political positions, including the presidency. Ostensibly aimed at opening up Nigeria’s democratic space for increased youth participation, the timing of the laws’ introduction may serve to benefit Buhari himself more than the country’s younger generation.
Having secured influence with the ruling CCM in the 1990s, Rostam Aziz soon rose to become one of Tanzania’s most influential figures. While his influence appears to have waned somewhat – following his incrimination in various corruption scandals – Aziz still retains friends and allies within the CCM and is believed to retain some influence behind the scenes.
As public confidence and trust in Nigeria’s traditional two dominant parties remains low, it is looking increasingly likely that a third political party will emerge as a real competitor in the coming months. By capitalising on the public’s demand for an alternative choice, a third political party has the potential to cause a real upset in 2019.
Belgian interests are being targeted by the DRC government in a series of apparent retaliatory attacks following Brussels’ decision to reallocate funding that was intended for the central government to humanitarian NGOs. While Kinshasa’s actions may be downplayed as political grandstanding, there are concerns that they will inevitably impact the foreign business environment.
Sport hunting in Tanzania has long been synonymous with government corruption, with access to the lucrative sector believed to be controlled by a small group of elite politicians. However, the appointment of a new Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism suggests an imminent end to this trend, as sport hunting has finally attracted the attention of President John Magufuli’s war against corruption.
As President Kabila’s hold on power becomes more and more tenuous, persistent instability across the DRC has become the government’s main excuse to continue to delay new elections. This unrest appears to have been exacerbated by the actions of various illicit networks who, according to various observers, are acting on behalf of the government.
Free Article
In his two years in power, Tanzania’s President John Magufuli has only made a handful of official trips abroad, raising fears that his focus on domestic affairs is having a detrimental effect on Tanzania’s wider foreign policy.
A recent cabinet reshuffle appears to have increased President John Magufuli’s authority and control over Tanzania’s commercial industries and wider political landscape following the appointment of several alleged political allies to positions of influence.
The relationship between politics and newspapers in Nigeria has evolved over recent years as the newspaper industry struggles to remain solvent. Ultimately, this financial instability has exposed the industry to political interference, as both newspapers and journalists are more inclined to refine their reporting to retain favour with those elites that are in a position to help them financially.
Kidnap for ransom is a dominant form of criminality in the Niger Delta, having evolved from being a tool used by local militant groups - to simultaneously fund their campaign against the government and attract international attention - to a hugely profitable business in and of itself. This activity has grown to involve an extensive network of actors.