Mental Health in African Society


Following the Corona Covid 19 pandemic key discussions have arisen on leadership, mental health and their impact on the daily lives of people. As communities are called on to manage change, different capabilities emerge. The different capacities of managing stress, change, decision making and assuring development may be traced to genetics, upbringing and events. For development to be attained in individuals, communities and nations addressing questions on mental health, its social interpretation, available assistance and transformation must be addressed.


Mental health, Leadership, Attachment, Adverse Childhood Experiences ACE’s, Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome PTSD, Childhood, Emotional Intelligence, Developmental Milestones, Africa, Global, Impact

1. Introduction

This the global society during the period of Corona – Covid-19 pandemic, took great interest in leadership, the different leadership types and styles presented and acted out by politicians and professionals. Another topic that come to the fore was mental health. Mental health discussions became linked to other topics such as economics, development and individual actualisation. The media discussed:

  • The economic impact of mental health, its potential long-term cost to businesses, communities and nations.
  • How individual’s childhood developmental and childhood experiences1 (Adverse childhood experiences) impact one’s future mental health challenges.
  • The increase in gender-based violence during the pandemic and its long-term impact on community and children’s development and health.
  • How leadership styles and individual’s mental health can hinder institutional progress.

The interpretation of this paper being: mental health, genetics and socialisation work together in synergy. This paper seeks to highlight the need to address and research the impact of mental health and its associated collectives in Africa and address potential challenges so as to aid African development. Mental health, affects and is caused by social and personal issue with political and economic consequences.

2. Mental Health

This paper is seeking to open discussion on mental health culture and understanding in Africa. Mental health affects not only those whom have been diagnosed of the disease at the different level. But it affects those who interact with the one who is suffering from mental health, those who support the affected and the community that observes.

2.1.  The People affected

Mental health should be understood as affecting and effecting people, regardless of the degree of mental health challenges an individual’s health will impact those around them. Culturally discussions on mental health in Africa appear to deal with person unable to operate and function in daily live i.e. those considered debilitated by mental ill health. However, the most dangerous psychological and socioeconomically is mental health deterioration that is not apparent while the individual functions at a relative level in their community.

Generalised examples of socioeconomic and psychosocial cases of mental health challenges listed below are suggestive of individuals who may be suffering Post

Traumatic Syndrome, Adverse Child Experience syndrome, Attachment disorders, Stress and depression linked to the former and leading to inability to manage circumstances.

2.2.  Examples of affected People

The examples given may seem very general and common, thus reflecting the level of social acceptance of mental health imbalance in the “normal”:

  • A soldier/security officer who suffered PTSD abuses community members.
  • High domestic violence rates in politically unstable communities/communities with high levels of political violence.
  • A leader of a company who suffers ACEs who fails to feel pity for employees suffering due to low wages and financial insecurity. Leadership attitudes that result in may in part reflect a mental health challenge in the individual:
  • Failure to promote others enjoys limiting other and causing pain • Racists, sexists and other isms
  • Failure to give a fair salary
  • Manipulative tendencies against co-workers
  • Instigator of divisiveness and conflict in group
  • An individual who has no sense of social responsibility or care for the less privilege is able to hurt the weak, i.e. children and animals reflect warning signs of mental health instability.
  • A political leader who suffers from PTSD and experienced ACEs who encourages team members to utilise youth members for violent political campaigns.
  • Xenophobic attacks against foreigners by youth who have experienced ACEs or PTSD
  • A step mother who abuses a step child in a manner she was abused.
  • A daughter in law brought up by an abused mother in turn rejects affection and actively abuses her in-laws.
  • Sexual or social identity crisis in youth a potential result of ACEs
  • An abusive father who suffered parental detachment and repeats cycle of abuse.
  • Abused citizens who go home and hurt their loved ones. The stress transfer reflects a minor or major health challenge.
  • Embittered citizens who in turn participate in corruption our illegal acts as an attempt at rebellion with limited risk.
  • A child who is abused and abuses other children
  • A high-level wealthy official who steals from the company may have a history of ACEs or PTSD seeking security in property, things that don’t disappoint.
  • A high-level individual who continues to feel inadequate regardless of the promotion and
  • thus, enters into extra marital affairs or commits suicide
  • An abused wife or husband who commits suicide because they were belittled, devalued and/or rejected.

Other singular effects that may in part be attributed to a mental health challenge 

  • Hoarding (including in corruption and sexual exploits) — desire to have meaning and control
  • Theft – a desire to dispossess others as one was dispossessed
  • Murder – a desire to kill or feel alive
  • Suicide – a desire to let go and leave the battle ground
  • Drug abuse — a desire to leave the battleground and voices of pain.
  • Rape – a desire to control and hurt others

This is not to suggest all human sin or criminality is based on mental health challenges, and thus beyond the person’s ability to control. This is an attempt to open discussions on how much of it is influenced and may be a relative contributing factor. Mental health affects our daily lives, and when mental health challenges are belittled or ignored and become the normal our society has become dysfunctional. The need to discuss mental health is to define and restore true normalcy. The African continents abuses and suffering stems in part to the mental health dysfunction of our perceptions, people, leaders and institutions (family, community and nations).

2.3.  The Mental Health Challenges

“It is easier to build strong children, than repair broken men” Fredrick Douglas

According to the World Health (WHO) World Health Mental Surveys, Adverse Childhood Experience ACEs account for 29.8% of all psychiatric disorders. Multi – problem young adults suffering from accumulation of psychological problems/ disorders and substance and experiencing your involvement are likely to have experienced one or more ACEs during childhood.

Adverse Childhood Experience (ACEs) are commonly defined by three categories Abuse, neglect and household dysfunction.

  • Eleven ACEs can be listed overall: emotional, physical and sexual abuse, emotional and physical negative, and house hold dysfunction, which can be subdued into growing up in a single parent family, domestic violence, family members police contact, drug and alcohol abuse and psychological problems of a family member.
  • There are problems such as parent child conflicts, juvenile delinquency, self-reported problems, female stress, parental problems perception tend to be stronger predictors of

Psychological imbalance will lead to psychosocial imbalance. The sphere of effect on others depends on the authority and influence of the person. The greater the authority the greater the spread of the harm perpetuated.

The imbalance may be seen through: 

  • lack of social relations — failure to apply emotional intelligence in relationships
  • lack of social growth — failure to manage emotional issues this may be rooted in child hood development challenges (failure to attain development goals)
  • Fear and anxiety — reflected in habitual transference i.e. abuse and denigration of others
  • Personal insecurity and identity quagmire — this may be seen in the inability to develop personal legacy.

On Dr Daniel Amen’s website he states the brain is the organ of learning, loving and behaving for every member of the family, school or business. When the brains in a family or organisation work right, the family or organisation tends. To be positive and effective. When the brain of one or more of the family or organisation members is troubled the family or organisation experiences increased stress and strain. Apiece of brain tissue the size of a grain of sand contains 1000 neutrons and

1 billion synapses, all talking to one another. Information in your brain travels at about 268miles per hour. If you don’t take care of your brain, you look an average of 85,000 cells a day. That is what causes brain ageing. According to Dr Daniel

Amen with appropriate fore-thought, one can reverse that trend and dramatically slow the ageing process and increase mental agility.

The Bible the scriptural basis of the Christian Hebrew God, has descriptive notes on mental health, character and consequence. Proverbs 29:2 When the righteous increase, the people rejoice, but when the wicked rule, the people groan. The wicked describe unnatural/lawless individuals 2 Timothy 2:7-8. The references reflect that people of different personality will impact others for good and bad.  The failure to address metal health problems harms the nation at large, its burdens the health sector, stagnates the economy and the increases losses (absenteeism and dropouts) in academic progress of nations and thus impacts the foundations of economic development. Poor Mental health harms businesses, breaks the individual communities affected, it burdens families as it affects individuals in varied ways.

3.  The Social Impact

Mental health affects every sphere of live, and failure to address is it will affect every social grouping, every part of our lives and time frame.

Individuals are part of families, families from communities, and communities build up nations. Mental health forces us to look at who we are, what is normal and what is not. What is causing the abnormality and how can we heal it, and if we can heal everyone? As we are forced confront our demon’s Mental health, like poverty and health, forces us to respond by its growing impacts on others.

Institutions realised in the past that providing a working mother with aid, maternity leave, sensitive interaction and support increases productivity and reduces loss of an individual whose impact on the company is key. All Development represent an attempt to improve the lives of men and their environment. Environmental changes, natural disasters and climate change put pressure on people. They may in part be caused by people but people have limited control of managing them once they occur. Mental health, poverty, and leadership may be impacted by men, as we proactively act to overcome their burden.

Healthy People and healthy communities enable nations to attain economic development, be innovative and creative. Morally healthy people and community apply good governance, ethics, thus stop Corruption, Collusion and Nepotism. In Africa Mental Health like poverty, and general health structures is impacted by leadership and its priorities. Leadership is including political leadership, social and civic leadership and family structures. A society with good Mental health is key to developmental success and social harmony of the nation.

This paper seeks to outline causes, effects, suggestions for responses and encourage reflection of current state and future hope, responsibility and accountability. Mental health must be addressed even at a child’s minor age and developmental level, while as part of occupational health strategies by academic institutions, it must be proactively addressed and assessed at educational institutions with provisions of holistic aid and support for the students’ lives regardless of the age.

3. 1 The Social Context

Mental health must be redefined in cultural context through interaction between Health professionals and traditional leaders, religious and community leaders. Leadership in Africa is centred on lack of transparency on personal values and life issues, yet leadership directs and impacts social transformation as problems are acknowledged and people are humanised. African society like all communities favoured the forceful invincible leader, yet the brokenness of leadership even when hidden will impact their communities for good or bad. A parent who hides their stress at work will lash out at the least responsive person. Harming that person in a deep manner when the pattern retains repeated and is not addressed. Humanity celebrates the sacrificial mother, the burden of rejecting one’s desire when not addressed brings forth future social challenges of entitlement rejection and accusations. The all joyful and forgiving child may be a front that must be addressed or bring forth embittered adults.

Stressful circumstances will happen, abuses at individual and community level will be experienced, Mental health will be tested by people, circumstances and even biological circumstances i.e. Ill health, the challenge is addressing what has happened, provide means for healing and ensuring that plans to stop or at least reduce repeat in the future is setup . Mental health will affect everyone and everything so every sector must beware. Once we have addressed mental health as a community, increased transparency will unburden people, our response will be restorative rather than punitive. Successful development will then be of benefit to all. As we discuss mental health issues, other hinderances like fear, insecurity will be reduced and increased social harmony may be built. Harmony builds up peace, thus increasing security and encourages creativity and income. Africa needs to stop the cycle of pain and start up, the cycle if healing and health.

At work

In recent years work life and home life are no longer kept separate. For decades psychologists have reflected on the impact of home life and work and vice versa. Today in many western countries Human Resources (HR) leaders and managers are finding themselves having to deal with employee’s issues in a way they never would have expected. Employees are opening up like never before, creating an evolution of the employer — employee relationship. with the stigma of mental health issues eroding, it’s no longer taboos for employees to talk about depression, anxiety and other issues with employees. 4 there was a time when employees were expected to leave the rest of their lives at the door when they came to work, Morgan Jim Vice President of MRA emphasises that as we know that cannot be done employees are called to care for the physical and mental health of their staff. He states that “besides being the best practice and the right thing to do, mental health affects safety, attendance, productivity, performance and job sati faction, and the above are important to a positive employee experience. 

The study of Adverse Childhood Experience studies has received attention by

HR structures. The effect that these have on the corporate bottom line has forced companies to be proactive and retain good staff through supportive measures. Aces can translate into low productivity, high turnover, sinking morale and rising healthcare cost 5. Academic institutes have also recognised an uptick in

ACE related student stress, anxiety and other barriers to learning. So, institutions are being protective in learning more about ACEs in order to help set students up for higher likelihood of success later in life. Mental resilience efforts aid in dealing with trauma, to enable bounce back by individuals

3.1 The Mental Health and Childhood Attachment

Parental conflict and challenges in parenting impact on children for the long-term. During the Corona Covid – 19 pandemic in Zimbabwe a mother killed her husband for siding with her daughter when they had an argument over the TV channel (herald Zimbabwe). While she was accused of being possessed or having mental challenges or being a plain ungrateful mother. Little was discussed about how she may have been impacted by her upbringing, the violence in her youth and community or emotional attachment challenges due to her childhood development.

Such discussions are key to lift the cover from mental health and its definition to the common person. How to help those suffering, how to identify, address and pull-down environments that cause them. Once we are able to communicate on what mental health should be, what it should not be and what everyone should know, we will be overcome its collateral damage that it produces on individuals, communities, nations and the world.

Social Abuses that may lead to detachment in African context include according this paper:

  • The lost children of the Diaspora – the children left behind who are cared for by parental care financially but not emotionally.
  • As community vote with their feet, they leave behind family that need more than their money
  • Absent parenting due to work commitments who fail to be present in the pivotal times of a Childs life.
  • Increases in immorality and unclear marital status of parents that lead to challenges in parental access by children.
  • Accommodation: Poor African in the Diaspora or in their home countries in some cases live in poor living conditions that create moral dilemmas for their children i.e. cases three families with children living with parents in a divided room of 50 m2.

According to an article based in the United States by 61.55% of respondent of low/middle income families had at least one Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) and 24.64% reported three or more ACEs. The study that was published by JAMA Paediatrics. Data were included for a diverse and representative sample of 214,157 respondent older than 18 years 5. Attachment of a child or failure to gain attachment are key indicators of the presence of ACEs, which in turn to greater social challenges.

Specified by Mr Kajawu (University of Zimbabwe) Attachment is defined as:

  • An enduring emotional tie to a special person, characterised by a tendency to seek and maintain closeness, especially during times of stress.
  • “An infant’s tendency to seek closeness to a particular people and feel more secure in their presence” (Bowlby et al., 1950).
  • Has its origins in the observation of and experiments with animals done by John Bowlby?

Assumes that humans are social beings: they do not just use other people to satisfy their drives.

  • A child’s failure to form a secure attachment to one or more persons in the early years is related to an ability to develop personal relationships in adulthood.
  • The child is highly motivated from birth to form and maintain attachments to a few caregivers
  • Attachment has survival value. Children will do whatever is necessary to maintain their attachments and to achieve security
  • The baby uses the attachment figure as a “secure base”
  • Attachment figures become “psychological parents” in addition or in spite of not being biological parents.

All babies attach but the security of the attachment depends on the caregiver’s responses to the child

  • Sensitivity: Reading the infant’s signals accurately and responding to them appropriately
  • Insightfulness: Seeing things from the child’s point of view; empathic understanding of the child’s experience
  • Strong reactions will occur when separating from nurturing parents — but also from abusive parents! Under certain conditions separations can be traumatic and have devastating consequences.

In Separation the child will follow the sequence of:

  • Protest (anxiety, anger)
  • Despair (sadness, withdrawal)
  • “Detachment” (recovery, renewed interest in the world).
  • Bowlby developed an ethological theory, which suggested that: – “the infant attachment bond is an instinctually guided behavioural system that has functioned throughout human evolution to protect the infant from danger
  • With this evolutionary based theory, fear of strangers and other threats to survival is innate
3.2 Attachment Dysfunction

Dysfunctional childhood attachment result is that the child may develop unhealthy attachment Manners:

A child may develop avoidant attachment
  • Uncomfortable being close to others.
  • They have difficulties trusting other people
  • Do not like to depend on others. Such patterns develop in infancy but can be modified as people enter into relationships
  • Use work to avoid social interaction
  • Although they do well financially, they are less satisfied with jobs than secure subjects.
A child may also develop anxious — ambivalent attachment
  • In relationships they are seen as needy and clingy
  • They are prone to worry about whether their partner loves them or not
  • Influenced by praise and fear of rejection at work
  • Allow love affairs to interfere with work performance.

The challenges of mental health problems and developmental problems may lead to addiction. The challenge of addiction goes beyond the addict, Alcoholic

Anonymous (and other support groups) aims to aid the addict to realise their problem, walk during recovery with goals and accountability. The journey of the addict takes its toll on the family and friends. They are challenged not to enable the addict, but also not to act out in anger. This group of the abused by the addict of something, have been offered strength through AlAnon/Alateen (help and hope for families and friends of alcoholics) the support structure to the support structure of addicts.

In the respect of madness — one psychologist states that all humanity is mad (imbalanced, broken and needful of help), it’s the level that differs. So, appearance of madness may differ to different people. According to good mental health is characterised by a person’s ability to fulfil a number of key functions and activities, including the ability to learn, the ability to feel, express and manage a range of positive and negative emotions. The ability to form and maintain good relationships with other (i.e. not only co-dependent relationship or working interaction)  

5 warning signs of mental health risk include
  • A change in personality. not acting or feeling themselves
  • Uncharacteristic anxiety, anger, or moodiness
  • Social withdrawal or isolation
  • Lack of self-care or risky behaviour
  • A sense of hopeless or feeling overwhelmed
4.  The Community

The current stability social and political in most of Africa does not reflect the reality on the ground. The high level of disenfranchised youth is a dangerous breeding ground for further social challenges. African youth make 46% of the population, with historic violence, increases frustration and hopelessness failure to proactively address mental health issue will lead to tragic results. Increases in migration, suicides and potential attacks against “others”. The failure to address mental health issues and complex historic triggers, may bring forth dichotomies not yet foreseen. Hence mental health challenges, information and assistance should be researched and offered. As human beings we desire to be heard and seen, this reflects an attitude of caring that enables people to endure other challenges in life. Peace is more than silence and the silent cries of hurting generations around the world, caused by, patriarchal, families, cultural, institutional and political players has grave consequences.

Africa cannot afford generations of hurting children and youth maturing and attaining leadership without awareness of mental health issues and opportunity of aid. Failure to provide this aid would be in the hands of current leadership in research, media and society at large.

For when the great see they cannot resist the people, they begin to give reputation to one of themselves, and they make him prince so that they can vent their appetite under his shadow. So too, the people, when they see they cannot resist the great, give reputation to one, and make him prince so as to be defended with his authority. He who comes to the principality with the aid of the great maintains himself with more difficulty than one who becomes prince with the aid of the people, because the former finds himself prince with many around him who appear to be his equals, and because of this he can neither command them nor manage them to suit himself But he who arrives in the principality with popular support finds him has either no one or very few who are not ready to obey. Machiavelli the Prince 

The quote above from the book the prince speaks of the relationship between power and society at large. Failure to address mental health issues that have the potential to affect so many other areas of human life, becomes a failure of peace and conflict management in retrospect.

4.1 The African Mental Health Centres

Current mental health care centres available globally include

Wellness centres: these are places where mental and medical healthcare professionals, nutritionists and life — coaches provide a variety of treatments and services for the health of their clients’ minds and Bodies. Some wellness centres are non-profit. Wellness centres offer skincare services and body services such as fitness, personal training and nutrition consulting. The challenge is most insurances do not pay for such services on medical grounds. This is a challenges that must be discussed by corporates, health professionals and insurances to validate the value of mental health attained through such centres and potential reductions of costs long-term (

Health spas: These are similar to wellness centres but tend to focus on restoring “body equilibrium” through physiotherapy, reflexology, massage therapy, acupuncture, yoga, cranial sacral therapy, wardrobe doctors, tarot cards, angel reading, polarity therapy, energy healing, crystal and stone massage. These spas are also not covered by health insurance.

Religious community: In the Christian community there have been attempt by different groups to address health and healing. Most Christian denominations believe that healing may be attained through prayer by divine grace, while others add on to divine grace personal gifts and/or effort.

  • Pentecostal leaders of the Christian faith have healing schools where individuals are called to pay for attendance and prayers. Pastors like Walter Magaya of Zimbabwe who claim they can cure Illnesses from HIV ( to mental health have often been found wanting when assessed.
  • Though cases of healing do occur further research may aid greater understanding both the medical and religious community of faith.
  • Some Apostolic groups (called white garment cults in Zimbabwe) have prophets and prophetesses who claim the capacity to heal all physical and mental illness.

The challenges with most unorthodox Christian groups are their rejection of medicine and solely putting blame on the spiritual, the failings of the individual (sin, unfulfilled promises) or external forces like witches i.e. identifying person using spiritual means to harm the individuals. while spiritual forces may be valid cause of mental health challenges, discussions with such leaders to educate on physiological and psychological aspects may aid the development of a holistic view of mental health.

African Traditional centres: There is in most cases not one school of academic structure of African traditional medicine even in the same country. Individual healers (who deal with hers and spirituality) and Spiritist’s (who focus on hearing the spirits/ancestors) may be taught by another through an apprenticeship. African traditional believes centre mental health issues much like the Christian cults on failure of individuals, punishment from the ancestors, crime by members of the family that released spiritual attacks and witchcraft. Limited application of the concept of stress and counselling hinders African traditional mental health centres from enabling mental health healing. In many cases increased stress is placed on those in the family due to conflict and accusations of witchcraft. The individual may feel better through deflection as they are provided by the witch-doctors a person to blame.

African traditional centres are however helpful in reducing or activating hallucinations through herbs and other traditional medicines. Reference these African traditional centres for herbal or spiritualists by individuals have seen that these spiritualised medical practices have had instances of success, though process and methodology may not be validated.

Orthodox Medical Centres; These include the study of psychology, psychiatry, and counselling. These vary in agreement on mental health methodologies but tend to have statistical and analytical basis for their references.

One of the more controversial psychiatrist of our time is Dr Daniel Amen known by millions of PBS viewers, he has been accused of being both a charlatan (, and a genius (,  His focus is:

  1. Love your brain
  2. increase your brain reserves
  3. Protect your brain
  4. Stop poisoning your brain
  5. Protect your memory
  6. Good sleep is essential to the health of your brain
5.  The Keys to Social and Economic Development

For a successful life, society and nation there are a number of areas that build up to a functional community. Aspects of good interrelations in different spheres of life involve other studies. The study of emotional intelligence has been lauded as more important than IQ (intelligence quotient). The capacity to relate well with people has aided success in networking, increased income and institutional harmony. Developmental milestones are steps hindered by events like Adverse Childhood Experience ACEs. So developmental milestones form the background of assessment of our expectations. Metal Health thus is influenced by many aspects of daily life have been included below as insight to the diverse impact of the study. The other areas listed below are key to social and economic development at micro or Marc levels.

5.1 Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence and mental health are key to social management and development in all spheres of life. Emotional intelligence began as an area of popular and business press interest, it is fast becoming a legitimate area of research for organisational science theorists. The many potential benefits of emotional intelligence have yet to be evaluated within the realm of legitimate academic research, and there are many areas of organisational concern that may be beneficially influenced by this empowering attribute. (Florida State University

Libraries Electronic Theses, Treatises and Dissertations the Graduate School 2004.)

  • Abuse and manipulations of other does not represent emotional intelligence. In the long-term it will result in social chaos and may endanger the instigator.

The general, unable to control his irritation, will launch his men to the assault like swarming ants with the result that one third of his men are slain, while the town still remain untagged. such are the disastrous effect of a siege

The Art of War by Sun Tzu 

Leadership is key to decision making, for others can only advise leaders in corporates, civil society, politics and elsewhere are able to enforce decisions to a level. So, making the right decision at the right time will save lives and bring about success, as Sun Tzu records in the quote. Mental health is a battle that must be won, or will overtake humanity resulting in civil strife and social breakdown at worst.

It is important that this table be viewed as applying to all leaders (parents, community leaders, civil organisers and other) not only through the view of the business lens but also the social and political lenses.

In Primal Leadership: Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence, Goleman, and his co-authors, Boyatzis and McKee (2002), assert that the effective use of emotion is basic to the function of successful leadership. They state that leaders are emotional guides influencing not only follower emotions, but also follower actions through that emotional influence. Leaders effect this influence through relationship management, motivational appeal, and goal setting, and the leader’s emotional intelligence is necessary to effectively performing these efforts. Emotion has been regarded as a non-rational, non-logical concept yet the impact of emotions on decisions and the lives of people cannot be question. Despite further studies being required to attain academic validity.

Results of failed emotional intelligence in society and businesses: 

  • Child soldiers, Partisan promotion
  • Abuse of youth through political parties, using them as vehicles of violence
  • Rise in Corruption
  • Xenophobia
  • Society of fear and gossip in a state of war
  • Migration or high staff turn over
  • Low innovation & Low productivity
  • Polygamy that feeds the ego and prestige of men at the expense of women and the family
5.2 Developmental Milestones

Anyone can become angry —that is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way —this is not easy.  ARISTOTLE, The Nicomachean Ethics

When styling the development of children and adults one has to take into account the sciences of anatomy, physiology, psychology, sociology and anthropology. There is a social and biological expectation that we are called to meet i.e. defined developmental milestones that one must pass through to functionally process the next stages of life. Failure to attain the milestone leads to a certain inability (which localised of transferable).

During the corona outbreak of 2020, the world was presented by leadership styles expressed in the most stressful and trying of moments. Stressful moments, difficulties and suffering bring forth areas in our lives and character not apparent when things are well. We also build character and mature during such time or breakdown and regress. Different leaders expressed themselves in different manners. Times of crisis and great success also reveal the accomplishment of developmental milestones in an individual.

  • Perception/expression of emotion.
  • Emotional facilitation of thought.
  • Understanding emotion.
  • Regulation of emotion.
5.3 Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD)

This is a disorder characterised by failure to recover after experiencing, or witnessing or participation in a terrifying event. The condition may last months or years, with triggers that can bring back memories of the trauma accepting by intense emotional and physical reactions (Wikipedia).  • Symptoms may include nightmares or flashbacks,

  • Avoidance of situations that bring back trauma
  • Heighten reactivity to stimuli, anxiety (increased sense of fight or fight reaction caused by difficulty sleeping, irritability and hyper – vigilance) or depressed moods, Psychiatrists 22 define PTSD into four groups
  • Normal response
  • Astute stress disorder
  • Uncomplicated PTSD
  • Comorbid PTSD
  • And complex PTSD

PTSD came to the fore socially through movies and stories of anger issue, violence, detachment and depression in American military personnel on their return from the Korean and Vietnam wars. These wars happened at a time of great social movements and with enforced enlisting of young men who returned home broken inside. Not all post traumatic survivors become violent or thieves overnight. But it is an important thing to note that most people who experience wars and great tragic event will be affected and will have their mental health affected.

  • Signs of PTSD can range from flashbacks to nightmares, pain attacks to eating disorders and cogent delays to lowered verbal memory capacity. Many trauma survivors also encounter substance abuse issues, as they attempt to self-medicate the negative effects.
5.3.1 Country References

In Zimbabweans recent history of trauma by civilian and armed forces has called for the need for reconciliation, mental health assessment and post — traumatic counselling for civil and military personnel. The history of participants posts the war of independence, the civil unrest of the 1980s, the war in the Democratic

Republic of Congo and Mozambique (soldiers from both wars in Zimbabwe who were interviewed did not receive Post Traumatic Counselling not did they believe it was routine for soldiers to receive such counselling). Zimbabwe experienced the violence of the land distribution and the violence during elections through different political parties, all have added to the Mental Health burden of the country, affecting families and communities young and old.

The study of metal health may aid in political and social relations in Africa. The understanding of the detachment, abusiveness and excessive force of security forces as part of a deeper problem, will aid national planning for healing, and social development. The reality is that post liberation, post segregation/apartheid and post-election eras may mean very little joy for nations, communities, families and individuals if the experience and pain of trauma are grafted in the soul of the individuals and their community.

American research during the conflict in Iraq and Afghanistan have taught greater knowledge on the impact of trauma on the men and women in the military. It is clear that veterans are at risk for a number of mental health problems including PTSD and Anger22. According to research there is a high correlation between PTSD and domestic/relationship violence. Between 8-21% of people in serous intimate relationships take aggressive actions against their partners. In the united states every 60 secedes, 20 people are physically abused by an intimate partner. I.e. 10 million people a year. Relationship violence has also been at a higher rate among people who have experienced certain traumatic events or PTSD. The worrying reality PTSD relations may bread ACEs individual and the cycle goes. The reduction of PTSD incidents in society, makes it the better for the nation. 

5.3.2 Social Review of PTSD

In the bible Nebuchadnezzar becomes mad at his most selfish and self — righteous and is broken during this time. A turn around begins as he comes to his senses. Madness in kings is well recorded in the western world. While in Africa all attempts are made to limit such conversation as denigrating the King/Ruler will harm the nation. Only in retrospect is it commented and usually blame is attributed to a targeted group or individuals. Hitler was said to have suffered with mental health issues and other traumatic realities, he surrounded himself with people of questionable mental health and the result was a criminal philosophy, mass killing and war.

Ayii Kwei Armah, the writer of the book the Beautiful ones have not be born, speaks of the challenges of post independent Ghana. A nation overcome by division, despair, disappointment, anger, fear and mass corruption. One specific developmental aspect he deals with is identity. The identity of the people in the midst of the rottenness, the identity of the leaders given by the people, and the one, the leaders give themselves.

  • How the fragmentation of identity, hope and reality has broken the people,
  • While the leaders fear removal and are disgruntled at those who dare question their ethics.
  • The failure to care and serve one’s community is attributed to an identity complex, i.e. desire to attain the identity of the Chief. The Chief syndrome will be reviewed bellow, it a tragic reality of African dysfunction that has been normalised in its abusive nature.
Book Review the Beautiful Ones Are Not Yet Born

This chief Syndrome, is the direct opposite to the western CEOs Rescue Syndrome

( that seeks to help everyone and ensure that non fail. The Chief in the African context is the social, religious and political leader of a community (he may hold one area more than the other), he had the greater number of women as wives, greater number of cows (assets), and rules over the allocation of the land. All who come before him bow to him and bring him gifts. To seek the help of the Chief requires that one bring gifts and do so with humble, if not outright submission, so those he serves, who call upon him to do his duty on their behalf do not demand, ask but almost literally beg, bribe and negotiate. To be the greatest men in Africa meant to be serve and be protect his people, he was any times feared, envied and disliked.

How can this predominate picture of post-independence shape of African leadership have produced many servant leaders and heroes of community in the past.  The current Chief syndrome becomes a dysfunctional identity that becomes a burden to Africa. The chief was meant to lead community in times of war, but in part of west Africa the chief during the salve trade would punish agitators by selling them off. This mental reality of selfishness reflects a foundational insecurity in one’s leadership. Is the failure of African leadership an individual’s faults or a communal fault? Is the metal health and makeup that promotes forth dysfunctional, selfish individuals as leaders socially grounded?

  1. Leadership ability determines a person’s level of effectiveness.
  2. The true measure of leadership, is influence, noting more nothing less.
  3. Leadership develops daily, not in a day.

So failed developmental goals may be attributed in failed identity and influence historical events of:

  • Child abuse i.e. institutional failure to focus on child developmental needs such as health and education.
  • Child marriage i.e. the rampant abuse of younger women by political individuals. A parent / caregiver / who is mentally ill will tend to abuse a child more often than other members of society and thus represents psychiatric imbalance https//org/doi/full/10.1176/
  • Personality disorders – hunger for power. Excessive power seeking, corruption and destructiveness is found for prolonged periods in an individual may represent a mental disorder 2 .
  • Enslavement, gender violence
  • Materialism, corruption
  • Success at any cost (political violence)
Danger of Chief Complex and failed Leadership

The failure to manage the mental health of our community has resulted in the disastrous reality for Africa.

  • Poor leadership, unethical practices, selfishness revealed in Corruption, Criminality and Nepotism destroy development and social harmony.
  • Migration of youth and professionals is a result of increased stress and frustration, these impact future development of the nation.
  • Increase of political violence is a build-up of poor mental health which in the long run will result in communities of peace being transformed into violent communities.
  • Xenophobic culture is a result of attacking what is easy and a step away from attacking oneself.
  • Businesses losses due to ill health, due to people fleeing managers and organisational culture of abuse.
  • Financial loss due to legal cases against the organisation i.e. police forces,
  • There is great and grave need for addressing mental health for moral reasons above all, but as institutions prefer the bottom line.
  • There is a high cost and developmental loss that will result due to failure to proactively address mental health.

The purpose of this literature review is to review and analyse the literature on emotional intelligence and mental health and to discover how leadership is impacted through psychological process.

  • It is hoped that this review will aid in the awareness of mental health and emotional in daily life, alleviating detrimental individual and organisational outcomes of this process.
  • Encourage discussion and research on the extend of mental health impact on the nation
  • Social conversation of defining and discussing abuses at childhood and their impact.
  • The recommendations of this paper are that that:
  • More research is done on mental health in Africa using segmentation
  • Presentation to leaders in Africa (political, social and corporate) to gain importance of Individual and communal of mental health.
  • Post traumatic counselling provisions and advice through non-governmental players
  • Teachers as primary counsellors who require training and pre counselling.
  • Address and record social and individual anger issue and fears
  • Increase Social conversation of abuse childhood and its impact
6 Leadership Challenges

Zimbabweans were ruled for decades by a man many gave great honour to. Social conversation at the end of his life blamed his wife (Grace Mugabe) for leading the man into error. Grace Mugabe was accused of mental ill health and suffering from schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression.  The Leader who was a senile geriatric was promoted by people in his leadership to continue leading despite failing to remember date and basic event, suffering from anger issue and blaming the West in aggression despite high corruption levels in the country. All attempt to comment and address his mental health were viewed as antagonistic and borderline treason. What is striking is that mental health in the different political parties in Zimbabwe like most of Africa regardless of its impact on the commoners continue to be ignored.

The debilitating impact of a parent who suffered mental health challenges has great impact on the children and those in the household. The idea that mental health challenges in the former Leader of Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace Mugabe had no social impact on the institutions of governance, leadership and the nation at large is to be hopeful. Zimbabwe continues to be ruled by people who potentially experienced Post Traumatic Stress through the war, political violence of the police and may have grown up in Adverse Childhood Experiences of abusive parents (domestic violence, divorced or polygamous conflicts), detached parenting due to high stresses and other mental health challenges. Such experiences in studies across the world bring forth hardened, detached, cruel and ruthless personalities for focused on self-preservation or increased hyper sensitive individuals caring and willing to sacrifice for anyone but themselves.

Regardless of the result the potential of Trauma bringing for balanced individuals is rare,  an abused child whose father belittled him and broke his identity, who hated his mother for failing to protect him may grow up to be abusive to his children and wife while hating the process of birthing what he is running away from and failing to address. 

Trauma changes an individual will it not affect leadership in nations, companies and communities and thus pollute the very environment its ruling, can traumatised children of any class become un-traumatised and balanced leadership. For decades there have been stories of children of the rich who go out hunting to hurt poor people. What may be ignored is that these children may be suffering from rejection, lack of attention and brokenness.

An article by Michelle Dean on Donald Trump stated. To understand Trump, you must look at his family and specifically at his relationship with his father. His father was originally German (1920-50) at a time when being German in America was not a good idea, they changed their name from Drumpf to Trump. His father was accused of having links to the Ku Klux Klan in 1927 the New York times stated he was arrested during a Klan rally. The families attempt to declare themselves self-made were seen even in his father despite the fact it was the death of his father’s brother which handed him the family’s inheritance. Donald Trump and his father are said to talk to each other by talking over each other. So, one sees a desire to redefine, create the scenario of personalised success, the desire to hide but there is also a reverse by a desire to overcompensate. Hence in abstract analysis Adverse Childhood Experiences and Trauma are not just for the poor, but even the well to do. George Bush’s war on terror that led to the attack of Iraq and the fall of Saddam Hussein was argued to stem from a desire to please his father more than focused international policies.

7 Historic and Cultural View on Mental Health

African citizens have been hurt, and have hurt others (foreigners) and themselves. One requirement of empathy is understanding another’s experience. The assumption is that empathy will be found inherently when it’s not been the case for many people suffering emotional and metal challenges.

  • Post-independence Africa has entered into an era of materialistic despotism,
  • In the political sphere, the leadership has focused on dismantling assets and use finances for selfishness.
  • Failure to develop where one resides, increased sense of entitlement
  • Lack of Social responsibility as there is focus to seek opportunity for benefit.

The Cycle of violence in Zimbabwe’s case can be seen in the failure of the application of transparent reconciliation attempts or any restorative restitution, in post-independence Zimbabwe. This failure became to observers, fertile ground for renewed violence. As seen against the Ndebele and perceived neutral people — Shona massacres during Gukurahundi in the 1980s, the land invasion violence in the 1990s and the continued denigration of minority groups including the diaspora community under the Mugabe government, as enemies of the state.   The failure to address these violent episodes in the nation may result in increased chronic ill health and trauma caused by ACEs and mental health challenges. Currently two years after the national peace and reconciliation commission act in Zimbabwe Acts of 2018. It is seen not to have political and legal power to address conflicts rooted in the justice faced (past and presented and future) by the Zimbabwean people (http://Kunjenga).

In Africa culture has impacted the divide on expectations and reality. To attain Metal health the effort is hindered by social challenges

  • the head of the family does not apologise publicly or even at times privately
  • the head of the family’s effort must always be praised, while he may acknowledge when he will diligence efforts of others
  • Youth must wait its time of authority (despite being given increasing responsibility) at the discretion of the head of the family
  • new ideas come from above not from beneath
  • new ideas may be perceived as rebellion against protocol and order
  • Religious leaders take it further and use scripture to confine people to their expectations
  • Submission is key to promotion at the pleasure of the leader
  • giving gifts is not corruption
  • Accumulation equals security of identity — be it wives or money
Mental health issues include
  • Sense of inadequacy (Xenophobic tendencies).
  • desire to please who one does not respect
  • Sense of rejection
  • violence, fear and anxiety
  • passed on by abused too abuse others, who in turn abuse
  • hoarding (benefits, money, assets) as a sign of insecurity
  • failure to express one self
  • socially awkward

The cultural reality in conjunction with mental health crisis also affects communities in the western world.  In the United States the findings by Merrick Mellisa T Phd 6 In the cross sectional survey of the 214, 157 respondent, participants who identified as black, Hispanic or multiracial with less than high school education, those with annual income of less than 15000.00 , those who were unemployed or unable to work, and those identifying as gays/lesson or bisexual reported significantly higher exposure to adverse childhood expertness than comparison groups.

7.1 Challenges to African mental health discussion

Thus, it is that in war the victorious strategists only seek battle after the victory has been won, whereas he who is designed to defat first fights and afterwards looks for victory. Sun Tzu in the Arts of War, Ho Shih thus expounds the paradox: “In warfare, first lay plans which will ensure victory, and then lead your army to battle; if you will not begin with stratagem but rely on brute strength alone, victory will no longer be assured 

The Success of a nation is found in the development of children into functional healthy adults. While much effort is currently being done in Zimbabwe to create awareness on child abuse especially in the case of child marriages as seen in the victory by Miss Ruvimbo Topodzi and her co applicant.

  • There is need to address social wounds from political issues to gain community healing, and encourage a culture of expression to aid personal mental health. With current increases in male suicide such efforts are key.

A Zimbabwean lawyer based in South Africa Tapiwa Marufu in 2019 began to research the impact of child abuse on males, specifically of male rape. Some victims came forth, had experienced abuse from care givers during school (i.e. one private school senior teacher targeted young boarders) or upbringing (family member or family friends).

  • These men stated for the most part that it was their first time ever sharing on the issue. They did not receive post traumatic counselling; some are productive members of society while other have challenges.
  • All abuse will affect more than the immediate victims.

List of Social challenges that impact Zimbabwe:

  • Child marriages, perception of girl child for monetary value
  • male abuse that is not reported
  • Gender bias in viewing mental health – men do not suffer breakdowns etc
  • Adults struggling with child hood memories of violence, rejection and rape

(grown children, female and male)

  • Political culture of violence — abuse of the youth directed by leaders
  • Religious bias — desire possession of property, wives and rulership over lives
  • Stress on males — the lack of social and cultural support for mental stress in men
Cultural Reality

In Shona culture the greater is met with the response I am well if you are well. Ubuntu I am because you are.

The mental health of men must gain as much be a focus attention, as women mental health and struggles. Currently we have social and cultural support structures that enable limitation of stresses for women more than men. Both sexes do need further aid for the success of society.

Counselling is key to the equipping and aiding Table 1: What is and what it is not.

Counselling is not

•                     Conversation

•                     Interrogation

•                     To promote the counsellor opinions

•                     Confession

•                     A diagnosis

•                     Information giving

•                     Advice

Counselling is

•                     Interaction

•                     Confidential dialogue

•                     Goal-oriented

•                     Promotion of decision making autonomous

•                      Helping behaviour change

  • Training manual for counsellors, Family Health International 360

Healthy persons and transparency leaders must be encouraged to mentor and aid their community in areas of mental health development and emotional intelligence values.

  • Increased or special allocated specialised Teachers training in metal health and counselling
  • In-house corporates counselling for employees
8. International attempts

Mental health success stories include

  • Rwanda
  • Sri Lanka

In these countries despite challenges and limitations of socio-cultural nature, attempts where made to address metal health issues at national level. Post national trauma and crisis can lead to further cycles of crisis and conflict. In Rwanda the success story of limiting conflict and challenges post trauma, has seen increased social unity after forgiveness and transparent addressing of hurt. The Rwanda communal meetings and judgements of abuser’s payment of restitution helped the healing processes. Providing healing from the bottom of society, the community to the top. by dressing the broken relationships between social groups, this aids to health and harmony, by promoting tolerance, understanding and nonviolent conflict resolution.


As seen by a study by Advocates of silenced Turkey, political circumstances beyond the main family makeup may contribute to ACEs in children. Stress is an essential trigger to survive in nature, and the response to stress is very complicated including hormonal pathways, specific neutron activation, leading to physiological changes such as increased heart rate, sweating or prays. it develops a lifelong memory of stressful events. the prolonged or excessive activation of the physiological stress response system in the absence of buffering protection afforded by stable, responsive relationships is known as toxic stress.  when stress is in these levels, it can disturb the developing brain and therefore influence behavioural, educational, economic and health outcomes of individuals. as quoted in this paper there are extensive studies from the US proving the correlation between adverse childhood experiences and unwanted physical and mental health outcomes affecting the individual for decades and even generations later.

If one man slays another of set purpose, he himself may rightfully be slain.” He who relies solely on warlike measures shall be exterminated; he who relies solely on peaceful measures shall perish. If words of command are not clear and distinct, if orders are not thoroughly understood, the general is to blame. But if his orders are clear, and the soldiers nevertheless disobey, then it is the fault of their officers. The Art of War by Sun Tzu  

Dr Tas Vildan a genial paediatrician is advocating for awareness for children suffering around the world. “as adults it is our responsibility within the society to provide an environment that is best suited for a Childs optimal and complete development. Our mission should be advocating for the physical and mental wellbeing of very child regardless of their background. As a paediatrics doctor I urge every adult to be the voice of the innocent children who suffer under dictatorial regimes around the world 21

Adverse effect of impairment of parent start not only after the child is born but also in utero. the women who were either incarcerated or had a partner who was impassioned during their pregnancy experienced additional hardships, and this in turn increased the risk of premature birth and adverse health outcomes of prematurity. it also decreases the breastfeeding rates, and affects the mother’s ability to proactive positive parenting which is critical in early childhood development. Children who witness their parents arrested suffer nightmares and false back of the incident, young children of incarnated mothers exhibit internalising problems, such as anxiety and depression, externalising behaviour such as anger and aggression to care givers and siblings, as well as physical problems as eating and chronic pain disorders. School age children of jailed parents show school related issues and difficulties with peer relationships and shoo performance. In turkey political attack of the Gulen movement supported as led to the arrest of 10000 women, 750 of these women with children in prison 21. Other post dictatorships experiences lined to ACEs in the populations have been studied in Argentina 1976-1983 experiences, Germany post 1990, Greece post 1941 and 1967-1974 experience. Other studies included research in the impact on the black community of mass incarceration, police violence and institutional bias in the United States. Outcomes concluded chronic conditions i.e. cardiovascular disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cancer, depression, diabetes and pre diabetes are higher for those and the onset at younger ages for those with >4 ACEs.

Southern Africa Post-apartheid/Post-colonial efforts do deal with national conflict in Africa have generally met with failure. 

In South African repeated xenophobic attacks have been attributed to the leadership of the ANC having failed to unlearn the lessons of abuse. The fact that the ANC leadership and the South African black community suffered institutional divisiveness from the Apartheid government through encouraging a divide and rule tactic leading to tribal wars Xhosa versus Zulus and such. High levels of arrest and extreme levels of police brutality.   So, copying from the rulebook of abuse, I do what I know – South African leaders are accused of per perpetuating violence inherently and strategically, inherently because this is what they know to do even if they do not like it being done to them.  Zimbabwean pre-colonial violence may be traced from the time of the Kingdom of the  Munumutapa who was described as a regional slave trader, and thus sold opponents and conquered communities as slaves to foreign traders. The Munumutapas’ of Zimbabwe have also been described by other tribes as very abusive in their relations. While further on in history one finds violence continues during Ndebele occupation of Shona tribal land through the raids of the Ndebele against the Shona people and property.  While in South Africa on well-known violent episode was the region of the Zulu kingdom and the great break of the Boers, both events leaving communities around them with scars.

Summary of Zimbabwe’s Traumatic events
  • Un-dealt with Violence of two racially grounded civil wars intermixed with tribal rivalry led to the post independent Gukurahundi massacre against predominantly Ndebele and neutral Shona community and the violent land invasion against the predominately white community.
  • Social violence was increased following the traumatic return of Zimbabwean soldier who are the War Veterans of the Democratic Republic of the Congo told of traumatic experiences, deaths of child soldiers and high instances of institutional corruption.
  • According Human Rights Commission HRW and report printed in the Guardian newspaper in the post 2008 election was filled with high levels of political violence and accusations of state sponsored/ignored mutilations, murder and assassinations of members of the opposition and the general public. The opposition in turn also lashed out in “self-defence”. Increases of violence in politics continue to date.
  • During the recent history of violence, no post traumatic trauma counselling was provided to soldiers and security personnel at the frontline. No attempts were made to set up restorative councils or national reconciliation opportunities. While the second republic claims to be more transparent through the provisions of communication forums. These efforts appear localised to victims and Victims areas rather than dealing with the national psych.
  • Machete miners or political tools – during the 2019-2020 period another violent group arose in Zimbabwean society accused of being an arm of political instituted violence. The group of people known commonly as the Shirugwi/ Machete gangs seemed to be focused on self-defence or theft of mines or being prepared for the 2023 elections for political violence.
  • One key point to point us that mental health challenges are common in Zimbabwe in mining areas due to gold miners processing their gold using mercury which possess the side effect of mental health (increase aggression, hallucinations, and insecurity). This group made up often of small sized, uneducated minors may be victims of ignorance of mental health.

The lack of political will to address such issues of trauma, mental health and social dysfunction have hindered closure for nation, closure and development that was found in the case of Rwanda.

Institutional Trauma

Examples of institutionalised trauma may be used to target a specific group to divert attention to political failures. Strategically because it has worked before, like the Nazi’s pointing the Germans against the “others/enemies” to increase unity. South African apartheid emphasised the differences and thus divided its blacks’ tribes, so as to stop a combined effort for independence and rights. The current ANC government is accused of uniting the people and diverting focus from economic failures and socials divisions of the haves and the haves not amongst themselves caused by failure in governance, corruption and nepotism by pointing towards the foreign blacks in their midst and the terrible history of apartheid that is behind them (an attack against the Democratic Alliance).

Xenophobia thus becomes an institutional tool if critics are to be believed.

The emotional impact of failed leadership can be found in families and nations:

The creation of family dictators assumes that the most vocal abuser is surrounded by submissive, conventional followers more religious than their leaders and have less of a need to dominate and control others and to exert power. Study by Maisel Eric Phd in Family Dictators – how authoritarian parents caused their children harm, showed that family dictators who may in the political arena be authoritarian followers, are in fact are authoritarian leaders at home.

The only difference between an authoritarian father or mother and an authority is his or her reach. They are the same kind of personality. When one looks at so called authoritarian follower behind closed doors, one sees that they are not following as sheep follow but rather striping Side by side with someone who represents them and who is their minor image. They aren’t followers but brothers and sisters in arms, comrades. Underneath the mild manner is the same clenched teeth, clenched fisted attitude of the dictator. Dr Maisel sates that Living with a family dictator should counted as part of the adverse childhood experience. What of national dictators?

Key point list 2 of a personality with disorder of excessive power will include the following: 

  1. Intense and extensive power striving
  2. Lack of empathy for people — indifferent to peoples suffering
  3. Streets smart — alertness and remarkable cunning committees to seizing and maintaining power.
  4. Ruthless in the cultivation blame of power
  5. Scapegoating and projecting blame on to a targeted individual or a group
  6. Corrupted by power and addicted to power
  7. Demand of others to be deepened on one’s powerful personality or that they become one’s obedient followers
  8. Emphasis on symbolism pure vs impure, holy vs infidel, chosen vs the condemned refusal to unify and accept opting views
  9. A basic disrespect for lives of others evidenced in callous or indifferent exposure of others to under risks
  10. An absence of conscience in context of self-interest and opportunity
  11. A homicide / suicide orientation
  • South Africa’s reconciliation committee . The resultant mismanagement of the South African reconciliation, leading in failure of social healing, social mental health and become breeding ground for xenophobia. 
  • Much like the failure of the Zimbabwean reconciliation effort
9 Conclusion

It is important that Africa deal with mental health challenges, be they childhood developed – Adverse Childhood Experiences by educating social and political leaders, professionals and communities about effective social and economic supports that addresses hardships, including trauma, prolonged hardships and other conditions that put families at risk and risk economic losses. Leadership in Africa should also take collective effort to address personal struggles with mental health and ACEs as an example to the community and the continent at large.

Lower childhood socioeconomic position – SEP is associated with a greater risk of ACEs/maltreatment. Such experiences in the past may follow a successful adult as may traumatic educed PTSD. PTSD must be researched and addressed in Africa, for social harmony and reduced social violence. Additionally, there should be encouragement to see the value of Emotional intelligence over mare IQ, as it may aid social and economic development.


Mandebvu, GSL would like to thank Ingrid Carlsson and Noma Madyiwa for taking the time to review this paper and highlight key points. She would also like to dedicate this paper to God and her mother, the two most influential forces in her life.


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the This is no election in Zimbabwe. This is brutal war. courts tighten noose on machete gangs

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