Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Journal articles

Une gouvernance informelle dans la prison de Makala à Kinshasa

Abstract : For more than thirty years, Makala prison in the city of Kinshasa in Congo has been faced with a contraction of its resources and a virtual absence of state subsidies. The limited presence of state agents and resources is compensated for by an informal organisation—locally known as the "governor system" and built around a leader of the prisoners known as the "Governor general"—which organises and regulates the daily life of the prisoners. There is thus a "dual governance" in Makala: one official and the other informal. This article analyses the modalities of the informal governance system, considering it to be the one that enables the prison to be managed on a day-to-day basis. It examines the characteristics of informal governance and its unique relationship with formal governance. It shows that this system of governors, structured by informal norms—often implicit, sometimes explicit—is the relatively stable product of an "arrangement" between the official prison authorities and the prisoner-managers. It highlights the hierarchical and authoritarian structure of the informal organisation and the regulation of the rent-seeking economy set up to finance the day-to-day running of the prison. The singular relationship between these two forms of governance allows the Makala prison to remain a penitentiary belonging to the state, but whose financial and material resources come from external private resources. This way of financing and managing the prison appears to be a kind of informal public-private partnership, a new and highly original form of "hybrid governance".
Document type :
Journal articles
Complete list of metadata
Contributor : Sylvie Ayimpam Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, January 12, 2022 - 12:52:13 PM
Last modification on : Friday, April 29, 2022 - 10:13:01 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Wednesday, April 13, 2022 - 6:04:25 PM


Une gouvernance informelle dan...
Publisher files allowed on an open archive


  • HAL Id : halshs-03093613, version 1


Sylvie Ayimpam, Michel Bisa Kibul. Une gouvernance informelle dans la prison de Makala à Kinshasa. Socio, Maison des sciences de l'Homme, 2020, Prisons, pp.87-107. ⟨halshs-03093613⟩



Record views


Files downloads