Why Fighting Crime can Assist Development in Africa Rule of Law and Protection of the Most Vulnerable

"This Report looks at a factor that is often overlooked in explaining Africa’s persistent underdevelopment: crime. Limited government capacity has meant that official data on crime in Africa are sparse, and independent research has also been limited. But all available indicators suggest that the continent does have a very serious crime problem. On reflection, this should come as no surprise. Crime rarely occurs in isolation, and is one of a range of co-factors associated with under-development. High levels of income inequality, rapid urbanisation, a high share of unemployed youth in the population, poorly resourced criminal justice systems, and the proliferation of firearms are all strongly associated with crime. Furthermore, contemporary forms of conflict fuel crime, and in recent decades the continent has suffered more from civil wars than any other part of the world."