American Democratic Support to Ghana’s Fourth Republic: Assistance or Encumbrance?

The end of the Cold War ushered the world into a new era of democratic
governance. Citizens in developing countries began to actively contribute to
the democratic process, by demanding probity and accountability in existing
governance structures. The international donor community added to these
efforts by responding to the challenge of the new wave of democratisation in
the late 1980s, by embracing ‘democracy assistance’ as a core priority. In
January 1993, Ghana inaugurated its Fourth Republic. It was a transition
fraught with challenges – which continue to blight the development of a
democratic culture. In response, the American Government stepped in
with financial and technical support in the hope of helping Ghana to avoid
a stall in the county’s democratic development. This aid for democratic
development has received plenty of criticism with regard to issues such as as
conditionalities imposed by America. The current study used a matched-area
comparison to examine the effects of aid programmes. The findings show
that the USAID-initiated ECSELL and GAIT programmes have increased
local-level democratisation in Ghana by strengthening the capacities and
abilities of civil society.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Journal of African Elections
Tags: America, civil society, democracy, democratic support, Ghana
journal of african elections vol14 number 2 transparent democratic governance in africa