The Global Peace Index (GPI) is a report produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) that assesses the relative peacefulness of nations and regions. The GPI ranks 172 independent states and territories (representing 99.7% of the world’s population) according to their levels of peace. The GPI has shown trends of increased global violence and less peace over the last decade.
The Global Peace Index was developed in collaboration with an international panel of peace experts from peace institutes and think tanks, and data is gathered and compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit based on the indicators listed below.
Global Peace Index indicators used to determine the most peaceful countries in Africa
- Number and duration of internal conflicts.
- Number of deaths from external organized conflict.
- Number of deaths from external organized conflict.
- Number, duration, and role in external conflicts.
- Relations with neighbouring countries.
- Level of perceived criminality in society.
- Number of refugees and displaced persons as percentage of population.
- Political instability.
- Impact of terrorism.
- Political terror.
- Number of homicides per 100,000 people.
- Level of violent crime.
- Likelihood of violent demonstrations.
- Number of jailed persons per 100,000 people.
- Number of internal security officers and police per 100,000 people.
- Military expenditure as a percentage of GDP.
- Number of armed-services personnel per 100,000.
- Volume of transfers of major conventional weapons as recipients (imports) per 100,000 people.
- Volume of transfers of major conventional weapons as supplier (exports) per 100,000 people.
- Financial contribution to UN peacekeeping missions.
- Nuclear and heavy weapons capability.
- Ease of access to small arms and light weapons.
According to the 2021 GPI, the most peaceful countries are Iceland, New Zealand, Denmark, Portugal, and Slovenia, while Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria, South Sudan, and Iraq are the least peaceful. However, in this article, we will list the top 5 most peaceful countries in Africa based on the 2021 Global Peace Index report.
Top 5 most peaceful Countries in Africa
Mauritius is notable for its natural beauty as well as the peaceful co-existence of nearly 1.3 million people who are multi-ethnic, multicultural, multi-religious, and multilingual. The island appears larger than it is, despite having a surface area of about 2,000 square kilometers, being 65 kilometers long and 45 kilometers wide.
Mauritius is not known as a peaceful island by default. Peace is a verb, and Mauritanians actively choose to build a peaceful country. They reclaimed their position as Africa’s most peaceful country in 2021, as well as one of the world’s ten conflict-free countries.
Why is Mauritius the most peaceful country in Africa? (choices that Mauritanians promote for creating peace)
Political freedom: Mauritius has an open, multiparty system that has resulted in the regular transfer of power between parties via free and fair elections. In general, civil liberties are protected.
People have the right to organize in various political parties or other competitive political groupings of their choice, and the system is free of undue impediments to the rise and fall of these competing parties or groupings.
In general, political parties are free to form and operate. In the 2019 elections, more than 70 parties ran, but only four formed the government.
Economic freedom: Mauritius’ economic freedom score is 70.9, ranking the country 30th in the 2022 Index. Mauritius is ranked first among 47 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, and its overall score is higher than the regional and global averages
Mauritius’ economic growth has been positive from 2017 to 2019, negative in 2020, and positive again in 2021.
Education in Mauritius: The government provides free education to its citizens from pre-primary to tertiary levels. The government has also provided free transportation to all students since July 2005. Education is compulsory until the age of 16.
Mauritian students consistently rank first in the world in the Cambridge International O Level, International A Level, and International AS Level examinations. Mauritius has one of the highest literacy rates in Sub-Saharan Africa.
According to The World Factbook – Central Intelligence Agency, 91.3 % of the population aged 15 and up can read and write as of 2018.
Ghana received a score of 1.72 in the Global Peace Index (GPI) in 2021, a slight decrease from the previous year. Ghana ranked 38th in the world (out of 163 countries), second in Sub-Saharan Africa, and first in West Africa in terms of overall peace. According to the source, the index ranges from one to five, with a lower score indicating a more peaceful country.
According to the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP) , feelings of safety in Sub-Saharan Africa have been declining, with 40% of people in the region feeling less safe today than they did five years ago, the highest percentage outside of Central and South America.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo celebrated Ghana’s latest ranking as one of the world’s most peaceful countries, and has urged Ghanaians to help keep the peace in the country.
Botswana is still one of the world’s most peaceful countries, ranking 41 out of 163 countries in the 2021 Global Peace Index (GPI). This keeps Botswana ahead of many European region’s countries. On the African continent, Botswana is third, behind Ghana and Mauritius.
Botswana is in the heart of Southern Africa, between South Africa, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. It quickly rose to prominence as one of the world’s development success stories. Significant mineral (diamond) wealth, good governance, prudent economic management, and a relatively small population of slightly more than two million people have elevated it to the upper middle-income bracket, with a transformation agenda aimed at transforming it into a high-income country by 2036.
Botswana’s stable political environment includes a multi-party democratic tradition, as well as five-year general elections. The Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) has ruled the country since 1966. President Mokgweetsi Masisi and his Botswana Democratic Party will remain in power from 2022 to 2026, with few threats to political stability.
4. Sierra Leone
According to the most 2021 Global Peace Index, Sierra Leone is the 4th most peaceful country in Africa and the 46th most peaceful country in the world. Since Julius Maada Bio was elected President of Sierra Leone in a run-off election on March 31, 2018. Sierra Leone has shown significant improvement and development, resulting in this ranking by the GPI.
In his first month in office, Bio became the first Sierra Leonean president to implement free education for primary and secondary school students in public schools throughout Sierra Leone, beginning with the 2018-19 school year. Bio has also abolished application fees for students at Sierra Leone’s government-run public universities.
President Bio declared a state of emergency in Sierra Leone in February 2019 due to endemic sexual violence. He toughened the penalties for rape and other sexual offenses. The state of emergency was lifted in June, resulting in a significant decrease in sexual violence in Sierra Leone.
5. The Gambia
According to the 2017 Global Peace Index, The Gambia had dropped 18 places since 2016 and was one of the top five countries with the greatest deterioration of an ongoing conflict situation. Furthermore, The Gambia faced a number of socioeconomic challenges, including rising poverty, high unemployment, a widening rural-urban divide, and a declining literacy rate. 3.
However When President Barrow was sworn in in January 2017, paving the way for a peaceful political transition, it was hailed as a watershed moment for democratic governance on a continent that has struggled to shed the stigma of authoritarian rule. The “New Gambia,” as it is now known, is re-engaging with the international community, with political and development initiatives already in the works.
According to the most 2021 Global Peace Index, The Gambia is Africa’s 5th most peaceful country, ranking 53 out of 163 countries in the world.