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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Democratic Republic of the Congo? Corruption, patronage, and competitive authoritarianism in the DRC
Author:Matti, Stephanie A.ISNI
Periodical:Africa Today (ISSN 1527-1978)
Geographic terms:Congo (Democratic Republic of)
development cooperation
foreign investments
About person:Joseph Kabila (1971-)ISNI
External link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/africa_today/v056/56.4.matti.pdf
Abstract:By examining the regime of Joseph Kabila through the lens of the 'competitive authoritarian' regime subtype, this article aims to advance an understanding of the process and stability of Congolese democratic reform. By examining democratic contestation that has arisen through the legislature, judiciary, media, and electoral arena, this article argues that the Kabila regime does not meet the minimal requirements for democracy but can more accurately be classified as competitive authoritarian. The article proposes that because democratization in the Democratic Republic of Congo is based on external, rather than domestic, pressure, particularly the effect of Western foreign aid on corrupt patronage networks, the regime is vulnerable to authoritarian drift. In the final section, the article presents the argument that a decrease in politically conditional aid and an increase in politically unconditional Chinese investment are both likely to push the regime in a more authoritarian direction. Given the size, location, and political influence of the DRC, an analysis of Congolese democratic institutions is essential to an understanding of democratic consolidation in Africa. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]