"The perception is that African leaders rule failed states that have acquired tags such as “corruptocracies”, “chaosocracies” or “terrorocracies”. Perspectives on political leadership in Africa vary from the “criminalisation” of the state to political leadership as “dispensing patrimony”, the “recycling” of elites and the use of state power and resources to consolidate political and economic power. Some states that were once “wholesalers” of security are now mere “retailers” of security, authority, resources and power.Given their present rates of growth and development, it is clear that most African states will not meet most of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015. This paper is an attempt to review and analyse the multiple layers of formal and informal political leadership in Africa.The paper also addresses new indications of transactional and transformational leadership on the continent as illustrated by the African Union (AU), the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) and the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM)."