The situation continued for decades following the departure of the former colonial masters;
a leadership and an elite ruling and exploiting ruthlessly with the backing of the armed forces. The armed forces given special treatment and allowed monopolies and concessions to keep them even happier, and a populist free rein at suppressing troublesome minorities;
a judiciary loyal only to the man with the largest envelope;
a police force corrupt to the core and more criminal than the criminals they pretended to bring to justice More often than not cooperating with criminals in joint money making schemes;
a semi-independent security force bullying, murdering, raping and shooting as directed by their masters, and of course for their own fun and profit;
a massive bureaucracy “administering” the land, in truth paid not very much but able to rent seek through their involvement in the granting of licences, permits and permissions for the largely trivial, a hidden and rapacious tax upon the whole population and its businesses;
a miserable and pathetic education system designed to keep children almost as uneducated as their parents – while the elite and friends avoided the chaos by sending their own offspring to the US, Europe and Australia.
And then came the Arab Spring to remind anyone willing to listen that no people will stand for such oppression and exploitation forever.
A small prize to the first reader who can think of another country that shows the same or similar characteristics and might possibly become the subject of its own “Spring Clean“. All it needs is another brave and angry fruit seller.
Answers on a postcard please.