Traditional Authorities in African Cities
Setting the Scene
25 June 2021
Swaziland, South Africa, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Botswana
This special issue on the role of traditional authorities in African cities highlights critical debates about governance and urban development in a fast-urbanising continent. The six articles in this issue focus on the following: (1) the roles of traditional authorities as custodians of the values of society; (2) the roles of traditional leaders as moral authorities; (3) the modern chieftaincy as an invention of the colonial state; (4) the ‘unrelenting co-optation and appropriation’ of traditional governance structures by the state; and (5) the stretching of pre-colonial narratives to justify the legitimacy of traditional leadership and its control of community resources. The special issue features contributions from Burkina Faso, Senegal, Ghana, South Africa, Botswana and Eswatini, providing a rare comparison between cases from Southern and West Africa.
Abstract based on original source.