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Ivory Coast Table of Contents

Ivory Coast

Party Decentralization

As the Ivoirian bureaucracy assumed a more prominent position in the postindependence years, the PDCI withered steadily. Increasingly it became a sinecure for the old guard, who lacked the ability to hold government office but remained personally loyal to the president. Also, by the early 1970s the one-party political structure was based on a purely ethnic system of representation at the local level that lacked any democratic procedures and that had produced an economically privileged political class. Moreover, the party and government hierarchies were characterized by nepotism and corruption. And finally, the poorly defined and overlapping responsibilities of party officials caused infighting and political rivalry.

In the late 1970s, HouphouŽt-Boigny, faced with growing party disarray, began to decentralize the PDCI at the local level, where a substantial change in party leadership took place. For the first time, the local party secretary generals, previously elected as part of a slate, were now to be chosen in open elections.

Data as of November 1988