Countries that have made greater democratic strides since the independence era, such as Botswana, Zambia and Tanzania, have in recent times witnessed a concerning trend, according to a June 2015 report by Civicus.

Attacks on citizens, activists and journalists in these countries are evidence of increasing intolerance of political dissent. Repressive tactics have led to a heightened state of fear in these traditionally more open societies.

The study was written by Cathal Gilbert, a researcher with expert knowledge of civic action in southern Africa.

Bill contributed to the research for the report and assisted in editing and final proofreading.

Read the full study

Civicus is a is global alliance of civil society organisations.

Featured image: Botswana president Ian Khama, AFP