Ethical Leadership and Effective Management of Public Resources in Africa: The Tanzanian Experience of a Missing Link?

Main Article Content

Sospeter Muchunguzi


This work explores the nexus between ethical leadership and the effective management of public resources. The major force is that any nation's performance, seeking to achieve its goals, depends on its leadership. This is especially true when ethical leadership translates into wise public policy design and implementation and good public service delivery to meet citizens' needs and ambitions. Unfortunately, the post-independence period in Africa has been characterized by a never-ending quest for the depressing trajectory of African economies. This paper employs a literature review of various sources. The objective is to better understand ethical leadership and effective management of public resources for African development by bringing out the Tanzanian experience. This study is based on findings from the literature review. Further studies are needed to include findings from Africa and elsewhere to give an informative work from a global perspective. This work is expected to inform researchers and all stakeholders concerned with leadership and development to get crucial information on the theoretical and policy gaps that must be addressed when dealing with ethical leadership. Topical gaps in the literature are suggested as prospective research areas.


Metrics Loading ...

Article Details

How to Cite
Sospeter Muchunguzi. (2023). Ethical Leadership and Effective Management of Public Resources in Africa: The Tanzanian Experience of a Missing Link?. PanAfrican Journal of Governance and Development (PJGD), 4(2), 202-229.
Research-based/ Original Articles
Author Biography

Sospeter Muchunguzi, Eastern Africa Statistical Training Centre, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Sospeter Muchunguzi is serving at the Eastern Africa Statistical Training Centre. He studied Political Science and Public Administration at a Bachelor’s Degree level and attained a Master’s Degree in Public Administration at the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. He is currently a Ph.D. student in Management studies at the University of Dar es Salaam Business School. His research areas include Resource Management, Digital Transformation, Policy and Development, Ethics and Leadership, and Organizational Change and Development. He has also participated in various trainings such as the Public Integrity Restoration Initiative Program; Anti-Corruption and Good Governance International Access Program; Leadership and Management Challenges for Sustainable Development; and Democracy and Democratization processes. He has participated in various international conferences on Development Administration and sustainable development.


Abuzaid, A. N. (2018). The relationship between ethical leadership and organizational commitment in the banking sector of Jordan. Journal of Economic and Administrative Sciences, 34(3), 187–203.
Agulanna, C. (2006). Democracy and the crisis of leadership in Africa. 31, 255–264.
Ahmad, I., & Gao, Y. (2017). A Review of Ethical Leadership and Other Ethics- Related Leadership Theories. European Scientific Journal, 13(29), 10–23.
Aikaeli, J., Garcés-Urzainqui, D., & Mdadila, K. (2021). Understanding poverty dynamics and vulnerability in Tanzania: 2012–2018. In Review of Development Economics (Vol. 25, Issue 4).
Akyüz, Y., & Gore, C. (2001). African economic development in a comparative perspective. Cambridge Journal of Economics, 25(3), 265–288.
Andreoni, A. (2017). Anti-Corruption in Tanzania : A political settlements analysis (No. 001; Issue October).
Asefa, S., & Huang, W. C. (2015). The political economy of good governance. In S. Asefa & W. C. Huang (Eds.), The Political Economy of Good Governance. W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
Barnard, C. I. (1938). The Functions of the Executive (30th Anniv). Havard University Press.
Bashir, M., & Hassan, S. (2019). The need for ethical leadership in combating corruption. International Review of Administrative Sciences, 86(4), 1–18.
Beriker, N. (2008). Conflict resolution: The missing link between liberal international relations theory and realistic practice. In D. J. D. Sandole, S. Byrne, I. Sandole-Staroste, & J. Senehi (Eds.), Handbook of Conflict Analysis and Resolution. Routledge.
Boe, O., & Kvalvik, Ø. (2015). Effective Use of Resources in the Public Management Sector in Norway. Procedia Economics and Finance, 26(2212), 869–874.
Brereton, P., Kitchenham, B. A., Budgen, D., Turner, M., & Khalil, M. (2007). Lessons from applying the systematic literature review process within the software engineering domain. Journal of Systems and Software, 80(4), 571–583.
Brewer, G. A., & Selden, S. C. (1998). Whistle-Blowers in the Federal Civil Service: New Evidence of the Public Service Ethic. Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory: J-PART, 8(3), 413–439.
Brown, M. E., & Treviño, L. K. (2006). Ethical leadership: A review and future directions. Leadership Quarterly, 17(6), 595–616.
Brown, M. E., Treviño, L. K., & Harrison, D. A. (2005). Ethical leadership: A social learning perspective for construct development and testing. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 97(2), 117–134.
Camillus, K. (2016, February 7). Role of Ethical Leadership in Realisation of Sustainable Development Goals. Guardian on Sunday, 1.
Carpendale, & Jeremy, I. M. (2009). Piaget's Theory of Moral Development. Cambridge University Press, May, pp. 270–286.
Chakrabarty, D. (2005). Legacies of Bandung: Decolonisation and the Politics of Culture. Economic and Political Weekly, 40(46), 4812–4818.
Cooksey, B. (2018). A Review of the Performance of Tanzania's Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau, 2007-2016 (Issue November 2018).
Cowell, R., Downe, J., & Morgan, K. (2014). Managing Politics? Ethics Regulation and Conflicting Conceptions of “Good Conduct.” Public Administration Review, 74(1), 29–38.
Dartey-baah, K. (2014). " Effective leadership and sustainable development in Africa : Is there 'really' a link ?" Global Responsibility, 5(2), 203–218.
Deborah Hardoon, F. H. (2013). Transparency International. In Global Corruption Barometer (GCB).
Dumay, J., Guthrie, J., & Puntillo, P. (2015). IC and public sector: A structured literature review. Journal of Intellectual Capital, 16(2), 267–284.
Erakovich, R., & Kolthoff, E. (2016). Analysis of Ethical Leadership and Integrity Development in Local Government: The United States, The Netherlands, Montenegro, and Serbia. International Journal of Public Administration, 39(11), 872–882.
Estrin, S., & Pelletier, A. (2018). Privatization in developing countries: What are the lessons of recent experience? World Bank Research Observer, 33(1), 65–102.
Fafchamps, M., Teal, F., & Toye, J. (2001). Towards a Growth Strategy for Africa (Issue November).
Gapa, A., Murugan, P., Isreal, F., Kabyemela, M., & Ani, E. I. (2017). African Studies Quarterly. African Studies Quarterly, 17(1), 1–166.
Hameduddin, T., & Engbers, T. (2022). Leadership and public service motivation: a systematic synthesis. International Public Management Journal, 25(1), 86–119.
Hamoudah, M. M., Othman, Z., Abdul Rahman, R., Mohd Noor, N. A., & Alamoudi, M. (2021). Ethical Leadership, Ethical Climate and Integrity Violation: A Comparative Study in Saudi Arabia and Malaysia. In Administrative Sciences (Vol. 11, Issue 2, pp. 1–18).
Hart, D. K. (1984). The Virtuous Citizen, the Honorable Bureaucrat, and the "Public" Administration. Public Administration Review, pp. 44, 111–120.
Hassan, S., Mahsud, R., Yukl, G., & Prussia, G. E. (2013). Ethical and empowering leadership and leader effectiveness. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 28(2), 133–146.
Hassan, S., Wright, B. E., & Yukl, G. (2014). Does Ethical Leadership Matter in Government? Effects on Organizational Commitment, Absenteeism, and Willingness to Report Ethical Problems. Public Administration Review, 74(3), 333–343.
Hassan, Sharfa, Kaur, P., Muchiri, M., Ogbonnaya, C., & Dhir, A. (2022). Unethical Leadership: Review, Synthesis and Directions for Future Research. Journal of Business Ethics, 1–40.
Hegarty, N., & Moccia, S. (2018). Components of Ethical Leadership and Their Importance in Sustaining Organizations Over the Long Term. Journal of Values-Based Leadership, 11(1), 1–11.
Heilman, B., & Ndumbaro, L. (2002). Corruption, Politics and Societal values in Tanzania: An evaluation of the Mkapa administration's anti-corruption efforts. African Journal of Political Science, 7(1), 1–20.
Hohenstein, N.-O., Feisel, E., & Hartmann, E. (2014). Human resource management issues in supply chain management research: A systematic literature review from 1998 to 2014. International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management, 44(6), 434–463.
Hope, K. R. (2006). Prospects and Challenges for the New Partnership for Africa’s Development: Addressing Capacity Deficits. Journal of Contemporary African Studies, 24(2), 203–228.
Iheriohanma, E. B. J., & Oguoma, O. (2010). Governance, leadership crisis and underdevelopment in Africa: An explorative discourse. European Journal of Social Sciences, 12(3), 409–416.
Katomero, J., Hoppe, R., & Wesselink, A. (2017). Tales of accountability: A Q-method study of discourses amongst Tanzanian members of parliament. Journal of Modern African Studies, 55(3), 423–453.
Khayesi, M. (2021). What Is the Ethical Reflection of the Sustainable Development Goals? Sustainability and Climate Change, 14(3), 138–144.
Killian, B. (2009). The Ups and Downs of Popular Demands for Accountability in Tanzania. The African Review: A Journal of African Politics, Development and International Affairs, 36(1/2), 23–42.
Killick, T., White, H., Kayizzi-Mugerwa, S., & Savane, M.-A. (2001). African poverty at the Millennium: Causes, Complexities, and Challenges. The World Bank.
Kitchenham, B., Pretorius, R., Budgen, D., Brereton, O. P., Turner, M., Niazi, M., & Linkman, S. (2010). Systematic literature reviews in software engineering- A tertiary study. Information and Software Technology, 52(8), 792–805.
Kuada, J. (2010). Culture and leadership in Africa: A conceptual model and research agenda. African Journal of Economic and Management Studies, 1(1), 9–24.
Lameck, W. U. (2018). Ethical Culture, Tanzania. Global Encyclopedia of Public Administration, Public Policy, and Governance, 1–6.
Lulu, O., & Msami, J. (2017). In Tanzania, anti-corruption efforts, seen as paying dividends, need citizen engagement in Afrobarometer (Issue 178).
Lumbanga, M. Y. C. (2005). Code of Ethics and Conduct for the Public Service Tanzania (pp. 1–16). Government Printer, Tanzania.
Mejía Acosta, A. (2013). The impact and effectiveness of accountability and transparency initiatives: The governance of natural resources. Development Policy Review, 31(S1), 89–105.
Menzel, D. C. (2003). Public Administration as a Profession: Where Do Body and Soul Reside? Public Integrity, 5(3), 239–249.
Miceli, M. P., & Near, J. P. (1988). Individual and Situational Correlates of Whistle‐Blowing. Personnel Psychology, 41(2), 267–281.
Mkonda, M. Y., & He, X. (2017). Tanzanian Controversy on Resources Endowments and Poverty. Environment and Ecology Research, 5(1), 30–38.
Mo Ibrahim Foundation. (2019). Agendas 2063 & 2030: Is Africa on Track? In African Governance Report.
Mo Ibrahim Foundation. (2020, March). Ibrahim Prize Timeline: Recognising and Celebrating Excellence in African Leadership. 1.
Museveni, Y. K. (2000). What Is Africa’s Problem? (E. Kanyogonya (ed.); NED-New). University of Minnesota Press.
Nicolaides, A., & Tornam Duho, K. C. (2019). Effective Leadership in Organizations: African Ethics and Corruption. Modern Economy, 10(07), 1713–1743.
Nkyabonaki, J. (2019). Effectiveness of the Public Service Code of Ethics in Controlling Corrupt Behaviour in The Public Service: Opinion from the Grassroots at Toangoma Ward-Temeke Municipal Council. Journal of Asian and African Studies, 54(8), 1195–1212.
Nyerere, J. K. (1967). Education for Self-Reliance. The Ecumenical Review, 19(4), 382–403.
Paget, D. (2020). Again, making Tanzania great : Magufuli 's' s restorationist developmental nationalism. Democratization, pp. 1–21.
Phillips, K. D. (2010). Pater Rules Best : Political Kinship and Party Politics in Tanzania's Presidential Elections. 33(1), 109–132.
Pring, C. (2015). People and Corruption: Africa Survey.
Pring, C., & Vrushi, J. (2019). Global Corruption Barometer Africa 2019 Citizens ’ Views and. In Transparency International. Transparency International.
Rabin, J. (2001). Handbook of Administrative Ethics. In T. L. Cooper (Ed.), Public Administration and Public Policy: A Comprehensive Publication Program (2nd ed.). Marcel Dekker, Inc.
Rahman, K. (2019). Overview of corruption and anti-corruption in Tanzania. In Transparency International (The Global Coalition Against Corruption).
Rahman, L., Withers, E., & Hartley, J. (2009). Organizational learning and knowledge in public service organizations: A systematic review of the literature. International Journal of Management Reviews, 11(4), 463–494.
REPOA. (2006). Combating Corruption in Tanzania: Perception and Experience. In Afrobarometer Briefing Paper (Issue 33).
Roque, A., Moreira, J. M., Dias Figueiredo, J., Albuquerque, R., & Gonçalves, H. (2020). Ethics beyond leadership: can ethics survive bad leadership? Journal of Global Responsibility, 11(3), 275–294.
Secundo, G., Ndou, V., Vecchio, P. Del, & De Pascale, G. (2020). Sustainable development, intellectual capital, and technology policies: A structured literature review and future research agenda. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 153(119917), 1–21.
Shakeel, F., Kruyen, P. M., & Thiel, S. Van. (2020). Ethical leadership: A structured review into the construct, measurement, public sector context, and effects. Public Leadership, 16(1), 88–108.
Shivji, I. (2017). Analysis: The Rise and Fall of the Arusha Declaration (B. Ally & I. Shivji (eds.)). Simulizi Za Azimio La Arusha; Inter Press of Tanzania Ltd.
Snyder, H. (2019). Literature review as a research methodology : An overview and guidelines. Journal of Business Research, 104(August), pp. 333–339.
Tortorella, G. L., Cawley Vergara, A. Mac, Garza-Reyes, J. A., & Sawhney, R. (2020). Organizational learning paths based upon industry 4.0 adoption: An empirical study with Brazilian manufacturers. International Journal of Production Economics, 219, 284–294.
Treviño, L. K., Brown, M., & Hartman, L. P. (2003). A qualitative investigation of perceived executive ethical leadership: Perceptions from inside and outside the executive suite. Human Relations, 56(1), 5–37.
Tripp, A. M. (2019). Changing the rules: The Politics of Liberalization and the Urban Informal Economy in Tanzania. In From the Arusha Declaration to the Zanzibar Declaration (2nd ed.). University of California Press.
Villeneuve, C., Tremblay, D., Riffon, O., Lanmafankpotin, G. Y., & Bouchard, S. (2017). A systemic tool and process for sustainability assessment. Sustainability, 9(10), 1–29.
Villoria, M., Van Ryzin, G. G., & Lavena, C. F. (2013). Social and Political Consequences of Administrative Corruption: A Study of Public Perceptions in Spain. Public Administration Review, 73(1), 85–94.
West, J. P., & Berman, E. M. (2004). Ethics Training in US Cities : Content, Pedagogy, and Impact. Public Integrity, 6(3), 189–206.
Whittemore, R., & Knafl, K. (2005). The integrative review : updated methodology. Methodological Issues in Nursing Research Disparate, 52(5), 546–553.
Zeng, C., Kelly, S., & Goke, R. (2020). Exploring the Impacts of Leader Integrity and Ethics on Upward Dissent and Whistleblowing Intentions. Communication Reports, 33(2), 82–94.