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An Analysis of the Causes and Dynamics of African Conflicts

Isa Mohammed, Samuel Salifu Edache, Martin, Anointing,


The African continent has been susceptible to intra and inter-state conflicts since the attainment of independence over six decades ago. These conflicts have impacted negatively on the socio-economic, political, and sustainable development of the continent. In Africa there is the thesis on the inevitability of conflict due to Africa's plural configuration and contraption of nations and ethnic nationalities. This paper examines the causes and dynamics of conflicts in Africa. It adopts a qualitative method with reliance on the secondary sources of data alongside the Protracted Social Contract Theory as a theoretical framework. The paper found that the origin of African conflicts has both national and international dimensions. The national aspect has to do with the composition and structure of the African states while the international is a reflection of the impacts of colonialism, imperialism, global political economy, globalization, and the ideological contest between capitalism and communism. It argued that in order to solve or manage African conflicts, there must be a thorough conflict analysis, followed by African solutions to African problems, the use of political solution, good governance, and international partnerships. The paper concludes with the idea that most African conflicts are internal, intractable, and protracted hence they can only be managed systematically. Keywords: Intra-state conflict, Inter-state conflict, Protracted social conflict, Africa.

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