Policing Transitions in Africa

Emmanuel C. Onyeozili, University of Maryland Eastern Shore

This paper seeks to highlight the evidence that Policing in pre-colonial Africa was fully developed centuries before the first European contact with the Africans. The sophisticated informal law enforcement apparatus ensured peaceful co-existence among the inhabitants of each community. Following colonialism, an alien form of law enforcement was imposed on the colonized thereby prompting a transition from African "informal" to Western "formal" form of law enforcement. Attendant problems and inconsistencies are discussed.

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Updated 05/20/2006