Comparative Political and Economic Development: The Place of Ideology in Kwame Nkrumah’s Ghana and Houphouet-Boigny’s Cote D’ivoire
The article comparatively examined the impact of ideology on political and economic development in Ghana and Cote D’Ivoire during the leadership periods of Kwame Nkrumah and Houphouet-Boigny respectively. Using the desk study research approach and limiting the study to the periods 1960 and 1966, the study gleaned that the two leaders pursued different ideologies namely: African socialism by Kwame Nkrumah in Ghana and state capitalism in Cote D’Ivoire by Houphouet-Boigny. The dichotomy in ideology affected the industrialization and agricultural drive of both countries differently, shaped the economic and political development and the relationship between their respective governments, civil society organizations and trades union which brought about a disparity in resource and income distribution among the citizens. These impacted the happenings on the political fronts differently. While that of Ghana partly culminated into the overthrow of Nkrumah’s government in 1966, that of Cote D’Ivoire was felt after the death of Houphouet-Boigny in 1993 where the marginalized demanded their “pound of flesh”. Based on the discussions, the article recommends that ideologies should not be adopted hook, line and sinker, but they should be tailor-made to suit the situation of the nation, economic policies should be aimed at achieving equality in society to ensure political stability and both political and economic policies should be given equal importance in the governance of the state.