AHC: Richer more developed Sub Sahara Africa

Today with the exception of Afghanistan and Yemen, virtually all the worlds poorest countries are in SSA.

is there anyway with a 1900 POD that SSA can be as developed as North Africa? Or maybe even as nice South America?
 
There are so many countries there that it's impossible to come up with a single POD for all of them. I do have some ideas for a few, however:

Zimbabwe: Joshua Nkomo and ZAPU leads the country instead of Robert Mugabe and ZANU. Even if he was as bad as Mugabe (which I frankly doubt) he'll die in 1999, therefore ruling Zimbabwe for "just" 19 years instead of almost 30.

Burkina Faso: Thomas Sankara isn't overthrown. He was far from perfect, and his flaws would likely become more pronounced over the years (as with any dictator), but he'd be better than Blaise Compaoré.

South Africa: Jan Smuts' United Party wins the 1948 election. Could apartheid (which already existed, and had for decades) be a bit weaker as a result? Calling in @Marius since he undoubtedly knows infinitely more about this than I do.

Congo: Patrice Lumumba isn't captured, escapes to Stanleyville and, from there, overthrows Mobutu. He'd almost certainly become a dictator, but at least he wouldn't regularly travel to Paris in a Concorde. Right?

Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda: The proposed East African Federation becomes a reality in the 1960s instead of being dropped.

Ethiopia: Haile Selassie is overthrown in the 1960 coup attempt. With a younger and more liberal monarch in charge, the Ethiopian Empire survives and the Derg is averted.

Sudan: Find a way for Khartoum to let go of the south earlier, averting decades of civil war.

Nigeria: The 1966 coup doesn't happen. Can this avert the Biafra War?​
 
I watched a YouTube clip on this yesterday. A constant theme is that European colonialism carved up Africa into parts that suited them, governed them each in their own way and them granted independence at different times with different local institutions.

In this case a rationalisation of colonies into larger, uniform units that would be run in a coherent way within these borders and offer opportunities for better decolonisation along more reasonable ethnic and geographical borders should produce better outcomes than OTL. One way for this to happen is German MittelAfrika arising from a CP victory in WW1. At the very least this would avoid the different regimes that lasted into the 60s, replacing it with a single regime and likely a single decolonisation policy without an attachment to borders that the different European countries had IOTL.

As for development, I suppose the Germans were no worse of better than the French, British, Belgians and Portuguese in this regard but with a big swathe of contiguous territory their development might be more uniform rather than OTLs patchwork.
 
French West Africa declaring for Free France in 1940 could lead to it being more economically developed.

De Gaulle was stuck with French Equitorial Africa in 1940 and it was the less economically developed of the two. The influx of allied money and infrastructure projects from 1940-44 helped it, but left France with two relatively poor colonial federations post war, rather than one super poor one and one that was a little better off.
 
You could also have closer union while under British control. It was suggested in the interwar period but London did not think there was enough common agreement for federation.
Hm, I think having Kenyatta, Nyerere and Obote having an agreement would make the federation look better, if only because it'd be seen as less of an imperialist construct.
 
Hm, I think having Kenyatta, Nyerere and Obote having an agreement would make the federation look better, if only because it'd be seen as less of an imperialist construct.
The push for federalization was generally local, while the resistance was generally from Britain. I doubt it would be overly tainted by imperialist overtones.
 
The French not assassinating Barthelemy Boganda certainly would have helped. A few more Seretse Khama-style forward-looking monarchs willing to make long-term plans and appoint suitable successors. Even then though, that comes from the Khama dynasty joining the British Empire to be an autonomous subject, allowing the development of some form of native bureaucracy. Government purchasing foreign property and companies rather than seizure might help throughout. Have the colonial states cease the ol' divide et impera in favour of actual nation building, but I'm buggered if I know how you'd do that.
 
South Sudan could have received independence at the same time as Sudan. Eritrea could receive limited independence, leaving with Ethiopia with a small bit of the coastline.

In general, a bit of pragmatism and negotiations could have solved a lot of african woes. To get this you would have to have a better decolonization process imo.
 
Zimbabwe: Joshua Nkomo and ZAPU leads the country instead of Robert Mugabe and ZANU. Even if he was as bad as Mugabe (which I frankly doubt) he'll die in 1999, therefore ruling Zimbabwe for "just" 19 years instead of almost 30.

Rest assured, Nkomo was every bit as bad as Mugabe. He also had the distinct disadvantage of being Ndebele, meaning that any government of his is going to be distrusted by the Shona. This leads to instability, only masked over by him taking an even tougher line on the land question than Mugabe did, earlier on.

Immediate brain drain to South Africa and the UK.​
 
In what regard? IIRC the situation in Zimbabwe didn't get really bad until 1995 or so. With the exception of the Gukurahundi, of course.

I'm not sure how to answer this question. Robert Mugabe did not suddenly convert from Marxism to Parliamentary liberal capitalism in 1980, and back again in 1999.

In the same way, Nkomo has a pernicious ideological underpinning which will, especially combined with racial and tribal conflict, wreck the country. Sooner in Nkomo's case, because he will need to seek Shona cronies much quicker than Mugabe did. Which, given his ideological roots, necessarily means liquidating the farms to hand over to Harare bureaucrats.

Also, I doubt the passengers of Flight 825 share your assessment of when things "got bad" in the country.
 
Top