The Characteristics Of Client Patron Relationships

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The characteristics of client-patron relationships in politics in Africa tend to be discussed as a phenomenon, or an issue or obstacle, that make African states remain in a certain phase of development (Cammack, D. 2007 p. 600). However, other scholars (Chabal, P. & Daloz, J-P. 1999; Erdmann, G. & Engel, U. 2007) have recognised that this phenomenon in Africa deserve further analysis and that characteristics of what is defined as neopatrimonial features, which will be further elaborated this essay, draws on specific social and cultural values and identities particular to many African societies. Patrick Chabal and Jean-Pascal Daloz (1999) are among these scholars who have argued that the nature of politics in Africa and its neopatrimonial characteristics is fundamentally different from that of the legal-rational bureaucracy found elsewhere in the world. It is in that regard that this essay will attempt to explain how and why neopatrimonial characteristics in African politics are rooted in logic and rational choices according to cultural and social values. In order to do so, this essay explain and discuss a phrase from Chabal and Daloz 's Africa Works: Disorder as Political Instrument (1999): “[...] the state in sub-Saharan Africa is nothing other than a relatively empty shell. For socially and culturally instrumental reasons, the real business of politics is conducted informally and, more stealthily, outside the official political realm” (p. 95). Exposition In order to be
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