Political Finance Index

About the Political Finance Index (PFI)

The PFI is the first of its kind in Africa.

The Political Finance Index (PFI) is research project that provides a snapshot of the state of political finance transparency and accountability in Africa. It aims to contribute to a better understanding of the role of money in African politics by taking the discussion to audiences in different African countries and the global north. Specifically, it compares how financing of political parties and election campaigns is regulated, how the regulations are enforced, the practices and perception of citizens on the degree of monetisation/commercialisation of politics in their country.

What is the Political Finance Index (PFI) addressing?

This is the first research tool that attempts to provide analytical data on the role of money in politics in Africa. The continent suffers from a lack of effective political laws, institutions, and political will to counteract the increasing rate of monetisation and commercialisation of politics. Corrupt political financing is prevalent in many African countries and becoming a democracy threat multiplier. The problem is compounded by the complex financial rip-offs choreographed by political elites to meet immediate and pressing political needs including political survival. Unfortunately, neither the African Union (AU) nor the Regional Economic Communities (RECs) have standards for political finance transparency.

What are PFI's objectives?

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What is the value-add of PFI?

With a robust advocacy and public awareness campaign, the PFI can on one hand play a pivotal role in deterring scamming by political elites in service of immediate and pressing needs of political survival. On the other hand, it can incentivize African governments, parliaments, political parties, and electoral authorities among others to support political finance reforms including enactment of campaign finance laws. Analytical data will be made downloadable and accessible by country governments, EMBs, and other stakeholders who may want to assess their own performance. Specifically, the PFI will:

How does the PFI fit into ACFIM’s Programming?

The Political Finance Index (PFI) in Africa report is aligned with ACFIM’s Annual Money in Politics in Africa Conferences and the Experiential Learning Institutes on political finance transparency. The report will further be used to take the discussion to audiences at regional economic (REC) level, country level, and international spaces.

What is the scope of the Political Finance Index (PFI)?

The index will be compiled and published annually. The inaugural edition will start with 15 countries and will gradually grow in numbers to cover all 54 countries in Africa. PFI will measure the extent to which those countries have the requisite legal and institutional framework in place to regulate political financing (political parties and election campaigns) and the practice on the ground.


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