Civil society activism is growing throughout Africa, with governments and international agencies increasingly calling upon non-governmental organisations to run projects and complement government activities. Aside from service delivery, civil society also plays an increasingly important advocacy role – pressing for legal reform and implementation, ensuring nondiscrimination in government policy and advocating for the protection of human rights. However, rather than engage with these critical voices, governments have frequently chosen to silence them, often through harassment, intimidation, threats of closure and even arrests. In Africa, a continent with diverse and complex social, economic and political patterns, it is imperative to look at the varying spaces available for civil society to operate.
Institutional Sponsor: CIVICUS