SA and West Africa: Between Democracy and despair?

"President Nelson Mandela looks set to attend the inauguration of Nigeria's President-elect Olusegun Obasanjo on 29 May. Nigeria's democratisation process has placed the spotlight on West Africa, a region overshadowed since independence by a combination of failing states and the usurping of democratic rule by more than 30 coups d'etat. It is a region of contrasts, with some states managing today to put decades of military rule and political instability successfully behind them, but others less so."