African Coups and Resource Rights
Solange Bandiaky-Badji (Rights and Resources Initiative)
This opinion piece from the Coordinator of the global coalition, the Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), discusses links between resource extraction, and associated poverty and human rights violations, and a wave of recent military coups in Western and Central Africa. The author notes that all seven African countries that have experienced military takeovers of national governments have economies largely dependent on resource extraction – Mali, Burkina Faso, Chad, Sudan, Niger, Guinea, and Gabon. Stronger land governance and a more equitable approach to natural resources is offered as the only way to protect community land rights and build countries that will become less vulnerable to coups.