Tag Archives: South Africa

No Confidence: Political In-Fighting Continues to Plague South Africa

South Africa grabbed the headlines for all the wrong reasons in 2017 with political brawls, corruption allegations, cabinet reshuffles and political infighting. In August, South African President Jacob Zuma narrowly survived an eighth vote of no confidence in his leadership, only to be usurped as leader of the African National Congress (ANC) Party by Cyril Ramaphosa in December. These events follow long-running claims of corruption against Zuma and his cohort. Under former president Thabo Mbeki, Zuma was dismissed from his role as Vice-President after being implicated in a corruption scandal and accusations continued throughout his presidency.

But worryingly for South Africa, the Fragile States Index (FSI) also demonstrated that these were simply the latest events in a long-term decline. In the 2017 FSI, South Africa ranked as the most-worsened country over the preceding decade that was not in a state of conflict, with a ten-year worsening trend that was matched only by the likes of war-torn Libya and Syria for the magnitude of its negative rate-of-change.

Read more ...

Fragile States Index 2018: Issues of Fragility Touch the World’s Richest and Most Developed Countries in 2018

BY J.J. MESSNER It certainly felt like a tumultuous year in 2017. As the wars in Syria and Yemen ratcheted up in intensity, Qatar was suddenly politically, economically and physically isolated from its neighbors, Catalonia moved forward on its attempts to separate from Spain, Venezuela fell further into chaos, the United Kingdom continued to struggle […]

Read more ...

Fragile States Index 2017: Factionalization and Group Grievance Fuel Rise in Instability

BY J.J. MESSNER

Though South Sudan has returned to top position on the annual Fragile States Index (FSI) for 2017, and Finland continues to maintain its position as the world’s least fragile country, the global tumult of the past year has been borne out in the Index’s trend analysis, as Ethiopia, Mexico, and Turkey recorded the greatest worsening over 2016. A number of developed countries also recorded notable worsening scores across certain indicators, in particular the United States and the United Kingdom, which both experienced highly divisive political campaigns during 2016. The long-term trends of the FSI have also raised red flags on a number of countries – in particular South Africa and Senegal – for which the conditions that could precipitate instability have worsened significantly.

The FSI, now in its thirteenth year, is an assessment of 178 countries based on twelve social, economic, and political indicators that quantifies pressures experienced by countries, and thus their susceptibility to instability. The FSI itself is based on the CAST conflict assessment framework, a methodology developed a quarter of a century ago that continues to be implemented widely by policymakers, field practitioners, and local communities in better understanding the drivers of conflict. The FSI, adapted from the CAST framework, is assessed through a process that triangulates content analysis of over 50 million data points, with quantitative data sets and qualitative research validation.

Read more ...

Problems of the Rainbow Nation Viewed Across the Full Spectrum

BY J.J. MESSNER

Over the past decade, the Rainbow Nation has also traversed much of the color spectrum on the Fragile States Index (FSI) map. Though our color palette is simply representative of a country’s score – green to blue for the most stable, yellow to deep red for the most fragile – the changing colors of South Africa on that map during the past decade has served as a stark visual demonstration of the country’s rapid decline. From the bright green of (relative) Stability in 2007 through to the yellow-orange of the Warning category in 2017 – as the country faces social, economic, and political turmoil.

It is important to contextualize just how far South Africa has declined over the past decade. In 2007, the FSI ranked South Africa at 132nd on a score of 57.4; in 2017, South Africa has rocketed up the rankings to 96th position, on a score of 72.3. Of all 178 countries that FSI assesses, South Africa is the sixth most worsened country over the past decade. To be even clearer, with the exception of Senegal, South Africa is the most worsened country not in active conflict or civil war.

Read more ...

FFP is hiring! We're looking for a part-time Operations Associate to join our D.C. headquarters team.

“Listen to understand instead of listening to be understood,” @jjmessner. Brilliant panel on meaningful stakeholder engagement led by @AngelaUMiller about importance of building trust, communicating proactively and focusing on quality over quantity. #SW2019

Meeting with community leaders and small scale miners from Sefwi Nkatieso, Western North Region, Ghana to talk about promoting peace, sustainability and reducing use of #mercury in #ASGM

Talking #mercury reduction in the small scale gold sector in Tarkwa for our #RECLAIMS #ASGM #Ghana 🇬🇭 program supported by @StateDept with @UMaT_edu_GH @WANEP_Ghana

“Peace-o, Yes-o!” Training on conflict early warning and response with members from across the Niger Delta @P4P_NigerDelta @PINDFoundation

Load More...