Several studies have reported dramatic increase of the prevalence of diabetes mellitus in Africa, and barriers to early detection and treatment, which are cost-effective strategies to prevent and control diabetes mellitus and combat its morbidity and premature mortality. The paper aimed to review the literature on the prevalence of diabetes mellitus and determinants of early detection in Africa. MeSH terms in the PUBMED Medline, LISTA (EBSCO), Cochrane, and Google Scholar in order to identify recent literature published from the year 2012 to 2017. Seven articles were reviewed, and high increase of the prevalence of diabetes mellitus in Africa was found. Evidences of cost-effectiveness with early detection and treatment were found; however, early detection is hindered by several factors that need to be addressed. In addition, the paucity of articles on early detection of diabetes mellitus and community-based prevention and control programs was observed. There is an increasing prevalence of diabetes mellitus in Africa, and there is paucity of evidences on the determinants of early detection and treatment program. Operational studies and community-based interventions aiming to community sensation and screening for diabetes mellitus are highly recommended.