Is federalism the answer?

From Zambian Economist Wed Feb 13 2013, 01:29:00

Delegates at the recently ended Southern Province Constitutional Convention proposed that Zambia adopts a federal system of governance. They amended the Preamble to the first draft constitution, dropping the words "devolved system of governance" and replacing it with the words "federal system of governance". The delegates believe the amendment will allow the local people to "manage their own resources in a more amicable manner".

This will be interesting because PF though Wynter Kabimba have already rejected the idea. The real issue with federalism is - of what sort? Zambia already has some element of federalism because at the basic level federal structures are any structures that exist at two distinct levels - the "central" and "local", each within a well defined scope so that it enjoys autonomy with respect to that scope.

The BIG issue that needs national debate is the degree of federalism that is needed to support social and economic progress in Zambia. Ultimately this is a question about what society we want. The USA federal system is different from the Switzerland or Comoros or Nigeria or Australia. Each country must ask the question - What model of government suits us? Not all issues must be fully devolved. Indeed not all issues are currently devolved, even though we have elements of federalism. Some issues can only be efficiently or fairly handled at the central government level. We need to be clear what those are.

Then there's the question of thinking through some of the negatives. For example, there are huge dangers of large distributional and inequality problems. Under a federal system provinces will compete with one another. That is a good thing but competition of that kind is optimal where there's perfect mobility of people and resources in general. If you find yourself in western province under a corrupt governor heavily influenced by regional politics, you will begin to envy other ...

[view whole blog post ]
 See More    |     Report Abuse

You might also be interested in the following news stories:

Nigeria:   100 Women Die Daily in Northern Nigeria During Childbirth - UNFPA (news)
Daily Independent
26 November 2015

Nigeria Country Director of United Nations Population Fund ( UNFPA), Ms Ratidzai Ndhlovu, has said about 100 women die daily in Northern Nigeria in the process of childbirth. [read more]

Nigeria:   Tell Nigerians Who the Looters Are, How Much They Returned - Fayose (news)
26 November 2015

Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, on Thursday, berated President Muhammadu Buhari's claim that many of those who looted the public treasuries in the government of former President Goodluck ... [read more]

Nigeria:   Police Arrest Man for Causing Explosion in Mosque (news)
Premium Times
26 November 2015

The police in Katsina State have arrested a man for allegedly causing sparks and explosion in a Mosque at Yartabki village in Funtua Local Government Area. [read more]

blogAfrica is's platform to help you keep an ear on the African blogosphere. We draw diverse voices from around the world who post regularly and insightfully about African issues. Bloggers, submit your blog's rss-feed!

Today's Featured News
Mozambique Ruling Party Faces Tough Contest

Renamo supporters: Ruling Frelimo faces a stern challenge at Wednesday's polls from...

Surge in Central African Republic Violence

African Union troops in Bangui (file photo): The UN has expressed alarm...

Nigeria, Cameroon, Ghana Get Crucial Wins

Asamoah Gyan of Ghana (file photo): The Super Eagles have boosted their...