Four of the five largest improvements on the index occurred in sub-Saharan Africa
Gambia has made the biggest improvement on the 2018 Global Peace Index moving 35 places in ranking from 2017.
Four of the five largest improvements on the index occurred in sub-Saharan Africa, despite the region having a slight deterioration in its overall peacefulness.
The single largest country improvement occurred in the Gambia, where improvements in political instability, perceptions of criminality, and relations with neighbouring countries saw it improve 35 places in the rankings, moving up to 76th.
“The election of the new president Adama Barrow lay behind the improvements in political stability and the Gambia’s relations with neighbouring countries,” the report states.
Among other things the report states are political instability, restoration of checks and balances and the decentralization of powert, and the promise to establish a TRRC to investigate abuses of previous regimes
Among the concerns raised are high intensity of internal conflict and high homicide rate.
“However, despite these significant improvements in peacefulness, there is still some cause for concern. The intensity of internal conflict remains high, and the homicide rate of 9.07 per 100,000 people places it in the bottom quartile of all countries on that indicator,” the report states.
Meanwhile, the Sub-Saharan Africa’s regional ranking remained unchanged at number six, despite a slight deterioration in its overall score.
Nonetheless, there were some notable intra-regional variations in the data.
The Gambia is placed 15 in Sub-Saharan Africa, (for the first time among the top 15).
“Of the 14 West African nations, the overall scores of only two – Niger and Nigeria – deteriorated last year. There were substantial sub-regional improvements in the domain of Safety and Security, including Liberia by eight per cent, the Gambia by 5.9 per cent, and Ghana by 5.5 per cent.”
The report published annually by the Institute for Economics and Peace can be accessed here: