Crisis States Working Paper 36

Title : Developing Multi-Party Politics: Stability and Change in Ghana and Mozambique
Author(s) : Giovanni M. Carbone
Date : November 2003

Abstract : Through the notion of party system institutionalisation, this paper examines the historical roots, the social bases, the organisational development and the electoral performances of political parties to understand how democratic practices have evolved, since their formal introduction in the early 1990s, in a country where a single party regime was in place for twenty years (Mozambique), and in one with a long tradition of military involvement in politics (Ghana). It concludes that, in both countries, political parties have been instrumental to the emergence and stabilisation of pluralist politics, and that Ghana's party system - which is relatively better and more evenly institutionalised than Mozambique's - also compares positively to African party systems at large and represents an asset in the fragile process of consolidating the country's democratic advances.