Governments across Africa have been overstepping their authority in plain sight — either through the constitutional process or authoritarian rule. Covid-19 is giving them the perfect excuse to exploit the international community’s preoccupation with its own crises to get away with theft, thuggery and the abuse of power.

In recent months we have seen African journalists like Hopewell Chin’ono detained for supporting anti-corruption protests in Zimbabwe and held for six weeks without bail. We have seen constitutional changes pushed through in Ivory Coast and Guinea that extend presidential terms. We have seen a military coup in Mali. And we heard of alleged Covid-related corruption in Gambia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Zimbabwe, Botswana, SA, South Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya, Malawi and Lesotho...

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