Ghana’s Democracy Index declines to 6.3, lowest in a decade

The Economic Intelligence Unit has described Ghana’s democracy as flawed in its 2023 Democracy Index report. Ghana witnessed a fall in both the Democracy Index and ranking status.

The African country, which had an index of 6.43 out of 10 and ranked 63rd globally in 2022, now has an index of 6.3 out of 10 and ranks 65th globally.

The country’s rank also dropped from 4th to 5th in Africa next to Mauritius, Cape Verde, South Africa and Namibia. This indicates a deterioration in the practice of democracy in the country.

The country’s index have been on a downward trajectory since 2015 and have been in the flawed democracy region since 2010.

The Democracy Index is a “thick” measure of democracy that assesses each country across five categories; electoral process and pluralism, functioning of government, political participation, political culture, and civil liberties. In lieu of these categorical measures, Ghana had its lowest score in the functioning of government, scoring only 5.0 out of 10 and had its highest score in electoral process and pluralism with an 8.33 out of 10.

Global Perspective

In 2023, the global democracy index witnessed a decrease from 5.29 out of 10 in 2022 to 5.23 out of 10 in 2023. It is the lowest level since the index began in 2006. The decrease according to the report is characterised by war and conflicts globally.

The Russia-Ukraine war, Azerbaijan’s conquest of Nagorno-Karabakh, The civil war in Sudan and Israel’s war with Hamas are the leading threats to security and democracy globally.

According to the 2023 Democracy Index, 74 of the 167 countries and territories covered by the model are democracies of some type. The number of “full democracies” (those scoring more than 8.00 out of 10) remained at 24 in 2023, the same as the previous year. The number of “flawed democracies” increased from 48 in 2022 to 50 in 2023.

Of the remaining 95 countries in our index, 34 are classified as “hybrid regimes”, combining elements of formal democracy and authoritarianism, and 59 are classified as “authoritarian regimes”

Less than 8% of the world’s population live in a full democracy, while almost 40% live under authoritarian rule—a share that has been creeping up in recent years. The increasing incidence of violent conflict has badly dented the global democracy score and prevented a recovery after the pandemic years of 2020-22

Most of the regression in democracy index occurred among the non-democracies classified as “hybrid regimes” and “authoritarian regimes”. Between 2022 and 2023 the average score for “authoritarian regimes” fell by 0.12 points and that for “hybrid regimes” by 0.07 points. The year-on-year decline in the average score of the “full democracies” and “flawed democracies” was modest by comparison, falling by 0.01 and 0.03 points respectively. This suggests that non-democratic regimes are becoming more entrenched, and “hybrid regimes” are struggling to democratize.



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