10 Longest-Reigning African Dictators

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Written by Becca Blond

In Africa, good governance is growing in demand. Citizens are insisting that their leaders honor constitutionally mandated presidential terms. Philanthropic and business leader Mo Ibrahim and his foundation reward good governance with millions of dollars, incentivizing leaders in the process to step down once their terms are complete. In Nigeria’s recent election, former President Goodluck Jonathan received kudos for handing over power peacefully following his defeat by Muhammadu Buhari.

Of the world’s 30 dictators who have most successfully held onto power, 14 are in Africa. These are 10 of the longest-reigning African dictators.

This is an updated version of an article that originally appeared Nov. 21, 2013.