Towards the end of 2015, we noted that there was every reason to be less optimistic about governance in Africa. Elections had in some countries led to political destabilization (Burundi), human rights and physical integrity were abused (Burundi, South Sudan), conflicts between government and opposition (Mozambique) or between government and rebel forces (South Sudan) were escalating, terrorist attacks were on the rise (Mali, Nigeria, Kenya, Somalia) while the corruption remained rampant in most of the region.

At the beginning of 2016, there is every reason  to remain cautiously pessimistic. Corruption is still widespread, terrorism is, as the recent attacks in Burkina Faso revealed, still very much on the rise, human rights abuses are still being perpetrated, and the conflicts between governments and opposition forces or between governments and rebel forces have at best failed to find a peaceful solution or have actually worsened.

Mozambique is one of the places where the conflict between government and opposition, in spite of the efforts made in December to have a mediation between government and opposition and to solve the conflict, has actually deteriorated. It was in the news today that thousands of people fled Mozambique to seek asylum in Malawi.