The safest and most dangerous countries in Africa

 ·4 Oct 2016
Civil war

While South Africa remains one of the safest countries on the African continent, it is struggling to turn things around for its citizens’ personal well-being, a new report shows.

This is one of the findings in the latest Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG), released this week.

Established in 2007, the IIAG claims to be the most comprehensive collection of quantitative data on governance in Africa.

According to the group, even though South Africa features in the top ten performing countries in overall governance in 2015 (ranking 6th overall), it is also shown the 10th biggest deterioration over the decade.

“(Between 2015 and 2016) six countries have shown deterioration in overall governance that has led to a downward movement in band: Algeria, Libya, Madagascar, Mali, Mozambique and South Africa,” the report said.

“Of these, South Africa has fallen from the ‘High’ into the ‘Medium-High’ band of countries.”

A big contributor to this is South Africa’s deterioration in the safety indicator over the last 10 years.

In terms of Safety, South Africa has seen a consistent decline in the rankings, though it remained within the top 10, sitting 7th with Lesotho.

The indicator is split into four sub-indices: Personal Safety; Rule of Law; National Security; and Accountability.

South Africa performs well in two of the four – ranking second overall for rule of law and fourth for accountability. However, in national security, the country ranks 37th, with an even worse performance in personal safety.

When it comes to personal safety, South Africa is ranked 44th out of 54 nations – near the bottom of the pile.

South Africa – Safety and Security

  • Rule of Law – 2/54
  • Accountability – 4/54
  • National Security – 37/54
  • Personal Safety – 44/54
  • Overall – 7/54

These are the 10 safest and most dangerous countries in Africa

# Country 2015 score 10 year trend
1 Botswana 81.9 -1.1
2 Mauritius 80.8 -0.3
3 Carbo Verde 77.1 -2.3
4 Namibia 76.1 +1.3
5 Seychelles 74.1 -0.4
6 Ghana 70.0 -2.6
7 Lesotho 67.1 +2.0
7 South Africa 67.1 -5.9
9 Zambia 66.5 +2.7
10 Senegal 65.5 +4.8
45 Chad 40.1 -1.1
46 Equatorial Guinea 39.8 -1.6
47 Eritrea 33.0 -8.4
48 Burundi 32.6 -13.6
49 Democratic Republic of Congo 31.0 +1.5
50 Sudan 23.4 -3.0
51 Libya 16.3 -34.1
52 Central African Republic 15.7 -16.2
53 South Sudan 11.5
54 Somalia 6.3 -10.4

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