Former President Olusegun Obasanjo said on Monday that Western liberal democracy is unsuitable for
Africa and seems not to be working for Nigeria and other African countries.
According to the former president, western democracy as it is being practiced in Nigeria and other
African countries, should be re-examined or moderated. He stated that this is because it has not delivered on good governance and progressive development for
Obasanjo spoke at the high-level consultation on Rethinking Western Liberal Democracy in Africa held at
the Green Resort Legacy, Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Abeokuta. Obasanjo said that the time has come to be brutal with the truth and face the reality that Western democracy is not delivering on expectations and should therefore be tinkered with in such a way that it will be able to take care of our peculiarities as Africans.
The former president said that the snag with liberal democracy lies in the fact that it wasn’t homegrown
and never took into account African history and multicultural complexities, among other peculiarities.
He further explained that the Western style of democracy failed in Africa because it did not take into
account the views of the majority of the people. He described Western Liberal Democracy as a “government of a few people over all the people or population, and these few people are representatives of only some of the people and not full representatives of all the people. Invariably, the majority of the people are wittingly or unwittingly kept out.”
He advocated for what he termed “Afro democracy” in place of Western liberal democracy.
According to him, African countries have no business operating a system of government in which they
have no hands in its “definition and design.