At the post 1990s, African countries undertook some democratic reforms following the end of one party authoritarian regimes and return to multiparty elections, which resulted in a more competitive political system. However, the central clog to economic transformation namely, public corruption remains germane. The paper explores some of the theoretical issues raised by the dynamics of socio-political change in Africa within the context of corruption and public administration including the internal and external dimensions of the unfolding corruption. It recognized that corruption in Africa is a development issue and therefore defines corruption as activities that undermine development and argued that corruption, which is largely conceived as diversion of public resource for private gains, significantly constricts development administration. This in turn impedes transition to developmental state. Corruption thus remains a theme that requires adequate attention in Africa’s development discourse. Using the institutional approach and secondary data sources, it corroborates Sen’s model of “development as freedom”, and argues that development administration practice should now be guided by certain ethical guidelines defined on the basis of social justice, transparency, accountability and equality in order for African states to transform to developmental states. The paper refutes existing practices in Africa where bureaucratic corruption undermines economic growth, rather proposes institutional overhaul to usher in a developmental state.
Key words: Development administration, corruption, developmental state, Africa.
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