Democratizing Education in Zambia: Sociohistorical Analyses

  • Edward Shizha
  • Ali A. Abdi


Education plays a vital role in social and democratic development, especially in “developing” countries. Most African nation-states are going through a transitional period of democratization. They are moving from tyrannical and autocratic rule that was practiced by most African leaders soon after leading their countries to political independence to a multiparty and tolerant political system. Zambia is one country that is currently undergoing democratization. Zambia gained its political independence from Great Britain on October 23, 1964. From independence until October 1991, it was under the authoritarian and autocratic rule of Kenneth Kaunda and the United National Independence Party (UNIP). However, since 1991, Zambia has moved into a politically functioning, but otherwise fragile democratic arrangement under the Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) which still holds political power. In terms of tangible postcolonial economic development, Zambia, as Ihonvbere (2003) observes, is one component of Africa’s failed categories, and the country’s opportunity to prosper did not improve with the processes of democratization in the last 14 years or so. Despite these not-so-encouraging realities, though, the promise


Education System Basic Education Community School Curriculum Framework Political Independence 
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© Ali A. Abdi and Ailie Cleghorn 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edward Shizha
  • Ali A. Abdi

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