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Why aid to Africa must increase

Shanta Devarajan's picture

In rich countries, when economic growth declines by three or four percentage points, people lose their jobs and possibly their houses, but they regain them when the economy rebounds. In poor African countries, children get pulled out of school—and miss out on becoming productive adults. In some cases, children die before they have a chance to go to school. If the current growth collapse is typical of the ones Africa has experienced in the past, an additional 700,000 African children may die before their first birthday.

In short, the effects of the global recession on Africa will be permanent. So the idea that aid may be threatened because of the recession in rich countries seems to have the logic backwards. Precisely because the effects in rich countries are temporary, resources should go to places where they may be permanent. Of course, there are political pressures to spend domestically. But do politicians in rich countries really think that a few more votes are worth more than the lives of the infants who will die as a result of the recession? 

Furthermore, the relatively modest sum spent on aid to Africa in the past decade was at least partly responsible for the continent’s rapid growth.  From 1998-2008, aid to Africa was increasing and economic growth was accelerating (to over 6 percent in 2007); poverty was declining and human development, especially primary school completion rates and the spread of HIV/AIDS, was improving. African countries had strengthened their macroeconomic policies—inflation had dropped to half its level in the mid-1990s—so that aid was more productive.  Private capital was flowing in at a faster rate than in any other continent. All of these developments have come to a grinding halt because of the global economic crisis—a crisis that was not remotely the fault of Africans. By increasing aid to Africa, the international community has a chance to reverse this trend and prevent a temporary shock from having permanent consequences.

Comments

Submitted by Majority on
Your post is interesting but it leaves me with more questions than answers. What do you think about the debate over "Dead Aid" by Zambian economist Dambisa Moyo ? Others are arguing that rich countries intervention in African crisis is in many cases worsening the situation (see Bill Easterly, Amanda Taub and Mahmood Mamdani). How can this get along with the increasing aid option?

Thanks for your question. In fact, I've written a post on Dambisa Moyo's "Dead Aid" on this blog (see "Recent blog posts"). Also, you might look at my response to Bill Easterly's comments about aid not being needed (or "responsible") at the time of crisis: http://africacan.worldbank.org/responsible-aid-in-a-time-of-crisis.

Submitted by sabine on
What is your opinion, Can development assistance to combat migration? about me: I am a student. I study business of distance learning in Germany. I will write a home work about "Can development assistance to combat migration?" I have heard fom your book "Dead Aid" and I will write about your opinion contra an other one. Thanks! Sabine from Germany

Submitted by Majority on
Thank you, I believe the point is that most of the times aid means "money" (or at least credit, which is the same). Donors have deliberately chosen the easier and simpler way: give some money (and too often what is given is less than what was promised) and forget about all the rest. I did not yet read Collier's last book but I read the Bottom Billion where so many ways in order to help poor countries can be found. Partnerships, new rules, help in sustain democracy, counseling,... in a word: politics. But it is much more easy to send some (little) money rather than keeping the attention and the concern over a country for a longer time.

Submitted by Anonymous on
Africa, a continent blessed with milk and honey but subject to poverty by its leaders. Let the truth be told that aid will not solve our problem in Africa. Developed countries are working their way out of recession but Africa is asking for aid to bail us out of reccession. It is just not possible. We have been asking for aid since the word "Aid" was created. In fact I believe the word was created for Africa. Instead of asking for aid why dont we ask for ideas.

Submitted by Anonymous on
I agree with you that its a shame Africa has to be always begging. I am an African living in a western country and tired of hearing people insulting Africa. They ask why we get all the aid and are still in poverty. I ask myself the same thing too. they say Africans cant even govern themselves, they say we have got the richest continent on earth in terms of natural resources, yet all we do is beg! I think enough is enough and so i echo you. Instead of begging for money, lets ask for ideas now that our leaders seem to be too dumb to think for themselves!

Submitted by Anonymous on
I agree with you that its a shame Africa has to be always begging. I am an African living in a western country and tired of hearing people insulting Africa. They ask why we get all the aid and are still in poverty. I ask myself the same thing too. they say Africans cant even govern themselves, they say we have got the richest continent on earth in terms of natural resources, yet all we do is beg! I think enough is enough and so i echo you. Instead of begging for money, lets ask for ideas now that our leaders seem to be too dumb to think for themselves

Submitted by Anonymous on
With all due respect, I agree with you. Why don't you come back home and assist us in getting out of this historic hole of ours. I in all earnestness hope that I will live to see at least the beginning of African people having pride and standing up and trying to solve our problems.

Submitted by Leroy Blaber on
yes,i have to come home to build together?but how have you utilized the firsts aid my other fellow African brothers and sister brought to help to build the continent.All africa know is to consume,but forget to build capital intensive,scale of preference is poor,The spirit of jealous have taken the power of technology,why?Because they feel angry to another person possession.Also there must be freedown of communication,you better speak your what,s up,if someone is doing the wrong thing,If corruption settle down with crimes,investers will not Entertain fear to bring technology and jobs to the country,let,s think about that?Thanks,leroy Blaber,born in Ghana,but live in united states of America,degree in IT,(COMPUTER ENGINEERING).

Submitted by Zaineb on
Aid in my personal opinion DOES help, yes-- but I agree with the formulation of ideas being the needed exogenous support (support being the key word). Homegrown ideas. I dont think Africa's growth over the past few years can mainly be attributed to AID, new endogenous solutions by frontrunning African countries such as Sth Africa, Nigeria and Botswana are setting great examples in my opinion.

Submitted by Anonymous on
People who write like this expose themselves as economic illiterates, and just want to say anything for the sake of saying it. What kind of ideas is the writer referring to? Ideas about how to reduce poverty? Has the writer not read anything so far about poverty reduction strategies? Or is it ideas about how to extract the "milk and honey" to feed Africans? Where has the writer been all these years of the Nigerian oil boom which never trickled down to the poor masses? Don't these masses deserve a descent living with assistance from countries that share our sympathy for the masses who have been taken for a ride by unconscienable politicians? Those who see our desire to help our people through Aid as "begging" should rather come with ideas, and should not expect the developed world to dangle ideas in front of Africans as a perfect substitute for Aid.

Submitted by Anonymous on
I thank the Author for raising this important subject. Aid should be considered as an instrument for global development partnership. Africa needs a development support. BUT the way this support/aid is delivered need to be seriously revisited. Aid for what?Who will use the aid? What is lacking that needs external support, etc? Genuine aid for Africa should help equitable natural and human resources development for Africa; and sustainable technology and know-how transfer, as well as enhancing participation in global trade. If aid does not help enhancing Africa’s own initiatives and capacity, it will be of less use in the future, just like its effects were limietd in the past, i.e. aid will perpetuate itself and Africa’s poverty, too.

Submitted by Gk. on
Mr economic literate, Let argue like elite as we are all working towards a better continent. Well, let begin as you provide answers to the following questions. 1.) Where is the N16 billion looted funds recovered from the then inspector general of police? http://www.nigerianmuse.com/20090415003246zg/nigeriawatch/officialfraud/tafa-balogun-s-n16bn-loot-looted 2.) where is the N6 billion ($40 million) meant for rural electrification project in Nigeria? http://www.saharareporters.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2748:are-they-still-honorables-and-the-excellencies&catid=116:sr-readers-letters&Itemid=393 For now let me stop here so that you can provide your the answers to the whereabouts of these funds. My literate friend, are you saying that because Nigeria is unable to use the revenue from the oil boom wisely then it is the responsibility of the international community or developed countries to give them aid at all cost. My literate Nigerian friend. You are indeed an economic literate. Let me round this up by quoting from the greatest book which I am proud to be litrate in, The Bible "a nation without vision, the people perish". No matter what you get in form of aid if there is no vision you will continue to perish till Jesus comes. You have a great day and please let keep this conversation going so that you the literate economist can educate me the illiterate economist. You might want to start with the strategies for poverty reduction to see if we can implement it in Nigeria while turning our back to the high rate of corruption in the land. Thanks for your contribution. Regards, Gk.

Submitted by Victor Maloi on
Shanta you are correct. However, the buraucracy from multilateral donor agencies would not help Africa. Often due to conditionalities, such "aid" will come several years down the road. To mitigate against the Global crisis, Africa must get get the resources at the right time and in right doses. Other than Kenya where the public is increasingly putting the Government on the spot, I am afraid most resource to most countries may end up in the pockets of politicians. We have some distance to go in terms of political reforms. Unfortunately, we are not able to leap frog through violent political reforms as in the case with Europe and America. If we are not able to leap frog, then we must brace ourselves for a tarbulent Africa in the next decade before this can settle. There must be political and economic reforms if Africa must move forward. I do not care which comes first but parts of Asia have been able to achieve economic reforms a head of political reforms. Aid to Africa therefore, is a complex matter. Victor

Submitted by Thierry Kangoye on
I totally agree with the idea that aid to Africa has to be increased in these times of economic crisis. Even if aid cannot be the solution to Africa’s development problems as argued by some authors, it can certainly be one instrument to dampen the upcoming bad socioeconomic consequences of the crisis in African developing countries. But from my point of view, external assistance can do so if and only if donors make sure that aid resources reach and benefit needy people. This point brings me to address the problem of the malfunction of (formal) institutions in Africa, mainly showed by bad governance outcomes and political instability. As showed by some academic works, one main explanation of why aid doesn’t work in an optimal way is the low quality of institutions in recipient countries, and donors have to more seriously care about it. To come back to how aid must be used to help African countries to face the effects of the global recession, I think that the real challenge is not about “how to increase aid in order to dampen the permanent effects of the crisis” but is about “how to make sure that these additional resources will reach efficiently the poorest, and not serve to fuel inefficient institutions”. More efficiency and more outcomes will certainly be obtained by building strategies to improve institutions (even if we know from new institutional economics literature that they are evolving quite slowly), and by making sure that African people hold the lead in these strategies, while increasing aid to Africa.

Submitted by Bah, Gambia on
First I would not categorically NO to stopping aid into Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). That said, the way and the form in which it has and is continuously been given MUST also change. Aid has proven successful in Western Europe and also in Isreal, so i believe more aid can make a different BUT there must be skills and knowledge in the population of SSA. Below are some reason for more aid: There is no state in SSA that is not depend hugely in aid for running it governments and to some extent more that half of the countries running cost come from aid. So stopping it would mean a total collapse of many public sector insitutions and thus further aggreviate the suffering of the poor and ordinary people as is seen Zimbabwe. We wouldn’t like to see such a thing spreading across the region. However, if aid has been following since before I was born and yet still people are poorer and poverty not declining, we need to think twice and ask what going wrong – and that a good part of Moyo’s book. Thus my proposal and change in the aid would be: • Aid to the education sector. More colleges and poly-technecques and remodernisation of all the existing ones. Germany and Japan were able to rebuild their nations after the war because of a simple reason – they invested in education and training of their people. More than 80% of young people in SSA are without no marketable skills in our present society. If these a resource (Human capital) is refined, it will lead to an unpresident growth and development. • Training all and in all sectors: from farming to lawyers, doctors, carpeters, nurses, midwives and so on. If there is a highly skilled nurse, mid-wife, teacher, carpenter, baker etc in every village in SSA, it will go a long way to improve the livelihood of the people in the village and thus lead to reduction of poverty. Any one who goes to school beyond the High school will be free from poverty and anyone who went upto college level will get a job either in the private or public sector even self-employed. • With skills and knowledge governance is easily enhance and thus the development of democracy and good governance, strengthening and development of the local institutions. • I am coming from one of the smallest and remotest village in SSA, but I am free from poverty not because I am smart or more intellegent than my fellow friends and relatives I left in the village (who are living under a dollar and have to repair their hut even dry season and have to walk miles before they can see a nurse or doctor) but because I had a chance to get quality education. • Aid must focus on education and not the present day mass education in try to attain a goal (MDGs). Millions go to school now only to end in Grade 9 and then finding no chance to a college or skillful training center and they don’t want to go back to the village to be like their parents – thus one of the massive exodus of young people from West Africa to Spain and if such trend is not rectified it will lead it to instability. Ghana is shining today because of its high literacy rate and quality education system. Give more aid to traing and building on Polytechniques not projects for poverty alleviations at the finance ministries and buying of four wheel Pajeros, lap tops and travel around!!!! Furthermore, aid should also be in the form of techology transfer and opening of the markets to SSA. Every country from Guinea Bissau to Zimbabwe has some resources which when value is added to the product will fetch better price and also could be stored for long period. Governments and private sector must increase it investment on Agriculture and more priority given to the sector. Gambia export g/nuts, fish and cotton. They sell them raw and at “world market” prices. Thus fetch little or nothing as compared to the efforts they make in it production. If they can produce g/nut oil, make quality butter, or fried them and parkage them, it will exponential increase the earning of these farmers and thus free them from poverty and like wise any other country in SSA. Why are the government not doing it, simple no technology and where the technology is available no skilful personels to run and maintain it. Thus once again more aid in the education sector and Techology transfer. The biggest challenge to development and reduction of poverty in SSA is ignorance which can be easily wipe out through quality education – quantitative or mass education is like given insufficent dose of a medicament to someone, it doesn’t cure but leads to resistance. That is where we are now in the black box of development in many countries in SSA. We must and the only way to get out is through quality education and technology transfer. Bah.

Submitted by Raj Raina on
Hi Shanta, I am sending a talk by Andrew Mwenda on African Aid. If you have n't seen it already, it is quite refreshing and I don't have much to disagree with Andrew. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfobLjsj230 Please take a look. from Kenya, Raj

Submitted by Anonymous on
1) The recession would reduce the available resources for AID, of course. But given that previously billions of AID money have been wasted and some what inefficiently used (without much trickle down effect on the poor that the amount of would have dictated), can Africans the decline in AID money as an opportunity to tighten their belts? 2) The best for Africa would be not necessarily increasing AID money (unless its use can be properly monitored), but taking a closer and transparent look at the Agricultural policies of the west. Well we live in a world where a cow in the Netherlands get (through subsidy to its owner) more than an average farmer in Kenya (who owns 10 of its cousins, African cows). 3) Create a mechanism to convert the AID money into some other form: say by encouraging FDI into these countries, help them improve their institutions and infrastructure… 4) Finally, it would be great to see how the numbers have been calculated - . Well, my argument is not that AID is UN important at all. It is of course helpful. Let us think not only about increasing AID to Africa, but also about improving the mechanism of allocating AID to responsible governments, in a way that helps the majority to get out of poverty and and create more jobs -- in wat that is not tantamount to “FINANCING THE GAMBLING AND DRINKING HABITS OF AN IRRESPONSIBLE FATHER, AND EXPECTING HIS CHILDREN TO BECOME WELL FED, DRESSED, AND ATTAIN THE BEST EDUCATION”.

Submitted by Adams on
Much as Africa needs aid, what is actually needed is fair deal in trade. The way African countries have been make by developed countries to open up their marketets to foreign produce, the former must do the same for the latter's produce. This can in a way help to offset the effects of damping in African countries since access to developed countries' markets will increase export earnings and also increase producers' incomes. This is what is really needed but not aid. The developed world cannot continue to damp their produce in African markets to destroy domestic production make all the money and only turn around to give us a fraction of that as aid. They should let us fish to feed ourselves but thry should not fish in our waters to feed us.

Submitted by commenter on
Stop begging; an Ms Moyo has rightly said, there should be a time limit on aid. Three years from now is enough, after that, not a cent should be sent.

Dear Colleagues

I did my first consultancy for the World Bank in 1978, and quickly learned of some of the systemic problems of the official development aid (ODA) system. Previously I had been a corporate planner and CFO and with academic and professional training in engineering, economics and accountancy.

The big systemic problems of the 1970s are still very much in play and carefully "off the agenda". From time to time there is a book about how awful development performance has been ... but nothing much gets changed.

The World Bank and General Motors (GM) have somethings in common. GM has been "destroying value" for several decades ... and so has the World Bank. Neither the management of GM nor the World Bank seem to have much understanding of this concept ... but in the end any organization that is "destroying value" will implode.

But in GM's portfolio of capabilities there are some gems. So also with the World Bank. Some of what the World Bank does has amazing value ... but most serves interests that have very little to do with having sustainable socio-economic progress in developing countries.

My organization's contribution to addressing the development performance crisis is the development and deployment of Community Analytics (CA). Progress at the bottom of the pyramid (BoP) can be very fast when resources are available in the right place and in the right form ... but for this to be scalable there has to be accountability, and for this CA has been developed.

It will be interesting to see what institutions want to embrace CA ... and individuals!

With best regards

Peter Burgess

Submitted by Ahiteme Houndonougbo on
I am not an aid advocate and I do share the point that aid will not buy development nor will it lead to economic transformation in Africa - even when associated with sound policies - (see Devarajan, Easterly and Pack 2002 http://econpapers.repec.org/paper/cgdwpaper/13.htm , Easterly 2003 www.nyu.edu/fas/institute/dri/Easterly/File/EasterlyJEP03.pdf ). That being said, I think we need to make a clear distinction between aid intended as a growth booster and aid as a relief, in order to better understand why aid is in many cases so critical in poor countries and Africa in particular. I agree with the author of the post “When will Africa stop begging for Aid” that aid will not solve our problem in Africa, assuming by “problem” he means economic growth and development. But there is a kind of aid that Africa just cannot afford dealing without; and that the developed world feels somewhat morally committed to deliver. This is what Shanta nicely summarized on this blog referring to the current situation: “In poor African countries, children get pulled out of school—and miss out on becoming productive adults. In some cases, children die before they have a chance to go to school. If the current growth collapse is typical of the ones Africa has experienced in the past, an additional 700,000 African children may die before their first birthday.” When it comes to immediate assistance for sectors such as health, education or simply aid following natural disasters, Africa just can’t afford to rely only on itself, for the good reason that between the time you began reading my post and the time you end no less than five children would have died from Malaria in Africa, and this figure could double or triple without aid. Should we ask for ideas as suggested by the author of “When will Africa stop begging for Aid”? It’s certainly true that good ideas are part of the drivers of economic transformation, but Africa doesn’t have idea problem! Actually, no poor country has (or should have) idea problem. There are much more good ideas and policies (from both theory and experience) than Africa ever needs. You have idea problem when you’re ahead, i.e among the leaders, because you have to innovate if you are to keep growing; the US has idea problems, Japan has idea problems, etc. These countries experience sometimes policies with uncertain outcome because they are in the front and have no empirical test to rely on when innovating. Countries which are behind don’t have and shouldn't have this kind of problem; they just have to open their “eyes” and look at what has worked and works elsewhere and then adjust to their own situation. A basic example: Africa does not need to reinvent farm tractors to mechanize its agriculture; the same reasoning applies for economic policies. No need to ask for ideas; we all know what works. I think. Then what do we need? The good news: very simple things, two words: leaders + visions (I agree with Gk’s Bible quotation). It has to come from the top of African countries. We need leaders that want to achieve economic success story in their country. We need leaders that step up, take full ownership of their development stake and push their people to hard work. African have to keep in mind that no one will do it for them. Even the most famous proponents for aid admit that the poor will have to get rich on their own effort to close the gap between them and the rich (See Sachs 2005, The End of Poverty, page 289). Leaders + visions. This may sound simplistic, even naive, yet it’s desperately true. You may come with the best policies with a doubled or tripled package of aid yet the outcome will not be different from what we’ve been witnessing for decades until you have a bench of committed leaders on the top of African countries. No policy will work and no aid will be effective without having these two words joined. The bad news: how do we get committed leaders with visions on the top of each country in Africa? From an economic perspective, I’m afraid there is not much we can do... Regards, Ahiteme

Submitted by Anonymous on
Thank you for this post. For an economic illiterate like me but a mother of a beautiful baby girl, death of 700,000 children before the age of one is not some news or fact I can digest. Not only the governments,but I think all those who HAVE should take personal responsibility and start GIVING to those who don't have. It's a shame if we let miery take over these young infants who were just brought into this world to suffer. Life should not be cruel to any humanbeing.

Submitted by DG on
but "institution" is an ambiguous word, academic fields didn't find a consensus about it and I think that african policymakers are not willing to listen to this song again. yet, leadership factor matters crucially in Africa and we should go beyond a conventional aid scaling up and look at the use of aid in terms of equal opportunities for people in the need!

Submitted by José on
Hi Shanta. I really appreaciate your contribution to this discussion. But, we have the responsibility as intellectual to put the right question on table. Do you think that the aid will resolve poor countries problems? Me, I don't think so. For how many years billion dollars flowed in Africa without any specific change on groung? The real issue is Governance. Because stakeholders mismanage few ressources the countries have. So, instead of talking about money every time let's turn our mind to success stories in development history, and let's help Africa to find its own way as Lao Tzeu teaches. José

Submitted by Anonymous on
Thanks for the write up Ahiteme. There is no point repeating all that you have said but I disagree with the way you ended at the same time I share your feelings to an extent. You asked the question, how do we get committed leaders with visions on the top of each country in Africa? And you went on to call this the bad news. My friend, atimes I really do not blame the corrupt leaders so much because atleast they stood up for something (Cold). My question is, we the Engineers,Doctors, Economists, Historians, etc... that knows what we need in Africa wot do we stand for (Neither cold nor hot= Nothing)? Again permit me to quote from my favorite book even though I am a sinner striving towards perfection on a daily basis "Rev 3:15-16‘15 I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were cold or hot. 16 Since you are lukewarm and neither hot nor cold, I am going to spit you out of my mouth." My friend the good news is until you and I rise up to the call and stop searching for leaders with vision then we still have a long way to go as a continent. No matter how small let stand for something. I will be glad to meet you in person if you will be around at the International Conference on Diaspora for Development, July 13-14, 2009. Again thanks for your contribution. Regards, GK.

Submitted by Ben Sande-Otieno on
The idea that increasing aid to Africa during this global economic down turn can prevent permanent consequences is simplistic. Empirical evidence shows that many countries in Africa are in fact not poor, but are simply poorly mismanaged. From a governance perspective, they suffer from endemic political corruption. While discussion of the nexus of political corruption is not the issue at hand, the depth and impact to African societies is obvious. When children are pulled out of schools to be factors of production, reflects on the lack of proper educational policies. Where such policies may exist (if at all) there is no political will to enforce them. Resource rich African countries can surpass some developed countries not only in productivity, but also in economic development if they build effective structures for sustainable development. Such structures must ensure transparency and accountability in resource development, distribution and utilization. As long as the African political arena is controlled by leaders and parties that are devoid of empathy and integrity, the vicious cycle of poverty, disease and destitution will remain. No amount of foreign aid can undo in Africa what a reservoir of political corruption has sustained for decades.

I agree, pouring more money into some countries in Africa will only enable more greed and corruption on the side of some of those few that abuse their power. The fact is although Africa is widely regarded as poverty stricken most countries their are more than capable of handling themselves in this current climate. However it is just their corrupt leaders that are influening their economic decline! Great post

This is a Very Tough Call for many countries. You have to put yourself in the shoes of others in times like this. Example lets say you have 2 optins. A.Give your broke Brother 300 to pay his mortgage so he and his family are not homeless B. Spend that same $$ on Saving a life in Africa? Saving a Life is a BIG deal but we as people just naturally grow more attached to things that we perceive as being closer to us. These economic time are hard for everyone.

You´re right! The major problem and obstacle for the development of underdeveloped countries is the corruption of their leaders. Resources should be used in an efficient social and economic policy but theys are used to further enrich the fraction of corrupt and dishonest politicians. I'm not generalizing, saying that all politicians are dishonest, but what we see is just a corrupt ruling class in many countries.

Submitted by Hadji on
True enough, times are hard on everyone. That's why we shouldn't focus on helping Africa the traditional way: just giving money is not the answer. Recent micro-loan programs have been really successful: we need to understand that a lot of small entrepreneurs in Africa start successful businesses and pay back their loan (sometimes as small as $300 or $400). This type of initiatives go a long way because the investor makes money (interest on the loan) while empowering a struggling african entrepreneur who never had the start-up funds to help his business. It's a win-win situation. Also exporting equipment and tools to be sold in Africa helps the continent because it boosts employment, stimulates investment and improves quality of life. Thanks Hadji http://performanceconsultantsintl.com

Submitted by YorTz on
Africa, a continent blessed with milk and honey but subject to poverty by its leaders. Let the truth be told that aid will not solve our problem in Africa. Developed countries are working their way out of recession but Africa is asking for aid to bail us out of reccession. It is just not possible. We have been asking for aid since the word "Aid" was created. In fact I believe the word was created for Africa. Instead of asking for aid why dont we ask for ideas.Thanks http://www.dotdigg.net

The main problems and constraints in the development of less developed countries, their corrupt leaders. The available funds were for the most important economic and social policies are used, but Theys used to increase the group and not only bad for the politicians. I do not know pengitlakan and said that all politicians are dishonest, but what we see is only the class of corrupt authorities in many countries. Education

Submitted by on
Fragile states & education: Guinea-Bissau, the horror of the political elite Why Cape-Verde or Mozambique increased primary education and reduced infant mortality and Guinea-Bissau, a territory with vaster potential, went the other way around? Simple answer: EDUCATION. And it seems that there is a new class of politicians that prefer to govern sheep than people. It's easier with less competition and less demands and an eternal vicious circle for a small group of friends. If the EC, for instance, would allocate 30% of 3 consecutive EDFs and promote primary education as it was promoted in countries like Cape-Verde, Guinea-Conakry, Senegal, Mozambique, etc etc, Guinea-Bissau could in 15 years become a country with people and a state. What is the need for a state from the sheep's perspective? None. Make people first and fight neo-colonialism.

Submitted by Anonymous on
Yes I do agree with you that aid is needed in Africa especially during this 3Fs crisis (Financial, Fuel and Food crisis), but not aid as the only solution. First of all Africa need Statesmen and Stateswomen not just "politician". For that Africa need good governance and responsible leaders that are accountable to the people they lead. Do you know that in Africa most of the ex-presidents are found either in jail or dead! Africa needs its own efforts to be seen wealthy; Africa need foreign investments as well as local initiatives, all these shall be facilitated by peace and security more than anything else. Africa has to end corruption in any of its forms (plagiarism, nepotism,...). Africa needs the culture of competence based society, the know how and not the know who! without all these, Africa will remain poor! Africa need all these and it has all it requires!. Africa is not poor; my Africa is poorly managed! Aid alone will not help!

Submitted by Anonymous on
Yes I do agree with you that aid is needed in Africa especially during this 3Fs crisis (Financial, Fuel and Food crisis), but not aid as the only solution. First of all Africa need Statesmen and Stateswomen not just "politician". For that Africa need good governance and responsible leaders that are accountable to the people they lead. Do you know that in Africa most of the ex-presidents are found either in jail or dead! Africa needs its own efforts to be seen wealthy; Africa need foreign investments as well as local initiatives, all these shall be facilitated by peace and security more than anything else. Africa has to end corruption in any of its forms (plagiarism, nepotism,...). Africa needs the culture of competence based society, the know how and not the know who! without all these, Africa will remain poor! Africa need all these and it has all it requires!. Africa is not poor; my Africa is poorly managed! Aid alone will not help!

Submitted by DAYI ETIENNE on
In Africa we notice that alone the aids don't resolve the problems of the ,crisis. The ideas alone also can't change our vision in reality .So we must be practice in our fight again'st poverty and crisis.According to my organization we have mains ideas . But without aids our ideas cannot be realized.

I live in South Africa which is also affected by the economy and situations of our surrounding countries. Its tough here and its even more horrific to see it in person. Thanks to the poster for raising awareness.

Submitted by KIRANGA GATIMU on
It makes no sense to continue aiding very badly governed African regimes who use the predicaments of the very poor to blackmail donors. Just look at the way corrupt and wealth politicians are even trying to hide behind the sufferings of the poor in Zimbabwe (there NO sanctions-only selective travel restrictions).I see the gullible peasantry who were led to invade catch water towers in Mau forest here in Kenya being manipulated by wealthy politicians -the later shielding behind tribal and ethnic royalties... What we need is quality governance Not political Machiavelli's basking in AID resources meant for the poor.Have you forgotten Mobutu? kiranga Gatimu NAIROBI

Submitted by professor.a.k.m.yousuf rahman on
Yes I do agree with you that aid is needed in Africa especially during this 3Fs crisis (Financial, Fuel and Food crisis), but not aid as the only solution. First of all Africa need Statesmen and Stateswomen not just "politician". For that Africa need good governance and responsible leaders that are accountable to the people they lead. Do you know that in Africa most of the ex-presidents are found either in jail or dead! Africa needs its own efforts to be seen wealthy; Africa need foreign investments as well as local initiatives, all these shall be facilitated by peace and security more than anything else. Africa has to end corruption in any of its forms (plagiarism, nepotism.every body should earn knowledge.prticularly religion sides.every body may be guided by the theme of their choice religion.first we have know my self.without knowing me,how iteach each other love,sacrificing,remove to helpcrime,violence.social development comes from emotion,love &felling. so,i think my self every body must be followed theie religion thought.follw their life according the guide of their choice religion. if it is possible crime,corruption must be removed

Submitted by Sana on
The main problems and constraints in the development of less developed countries, their corrupt leaders. Africa, a continent blessed with milk and honey but subject to poverty by its leaders. Let the truth be told that aid will not solve our problem in Africa. Developed countries are working their way out of recession but Africa is asking for aid to bail us out of reccession. It is just not possible. We have been asking for aid since the word "Aid" was created. In fact I believe the word was created for Africa. Instead of asking for aid why don't we ask for ideas. Thanks. Sana http://www.addkosana.com/

Submitted by ray on
I agree with you that its a shame Africa has to be always begging. I am an African living in a western country and tired of hearing people insulting Africa. They ask why we get all the aid and are still in poverty. I ask myself the same thing too. they say Africans cant even govern themselves, they say we have got the richest continent on earth in terms of natural resources, yet all we do is beg! I think enough is enough and so i echo you.

I agree with you that its a shame Africa has to be always begging. I am an African living in a western country and tired of hearing people insulting Africa. They ask why we get all the aid and are still in poverty. I ask myself the same thing too. they say Africans cant even govern themselves, they say we have got the richest continent on earth in terms of natural resources, yet all we do is beg! I think enough is enough and so i echo you. Instead of begging for money, lets ask for ideas now that our leaders seem to be too dumb to think for themselves! best regards, http://www.thaiseoservices.com

Submitted by Kazimoto Paluku on
We have been receiving several millions of dollars and NFIs without counting services and capacity builings from NGOs and Governments. We need still assistance from others, why can't we find otherwise for sef support? That is why african's countries came up with independency revolution. It is time for african's also think about development sustainability for their independency. You receive food and need still pans to prepare it, why don't you at least get pans and work for your food ( agriculture ...). We need FAO, WFP and other organizations that are involved in rural development sustainability and emergencies for african's growth to train and not give. In french some one said: Thanks for your contribution on my research, these are just ideas and I have to found out why we haven't sustain our development, to day peace tomorrow war, is that the cause? We need may be parteners that help africans to stop their aids and see if these continent will end from the earth. South Africa is becoming a reference for other countries in africa, why? Best regards!!

Submitted by เสื้อผ้าแฟชั่น on
I agree, pouring more money into some countries in Africa will only enable more greed and corruption on the side of some of those few that abuse their power. The fact is although Africa is widely regarded as poverty stricken most countries their are more than capable of handling themselves in this current climate. However it is just their corrupt leaders that are influening their economic decline! Great post

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Submitted by Daniel James on
I couldn't agree more, africa is in desperate need of aid, so much indeed its almost overwhelming. But if everyone from the established world just gave $1 it could really change there quailty of life. Dan -

Submitted by extenze on
Just by saying that aid to africa must increase wont solve the problem at all. We, the people from developed countries must help them to make this happen.

United Nations should have allocated funds for the aid in Africa. I've seen poverty stricken countries but Africa has the worst condition when it comes to food, water and health care.

Every year we donate to good causes and spend billions of Government dollars in Foreign Aid through the United Nations (UN), World Bank (WB), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Trade Organization (WTO) and thousands of charitable organizations and NGOs worldwide, who all dedicate themselves to helping the world’s poor. We’ve been doing that for maybe 60 years or more now, but the gap between the rich and the world’s poorest countries is still growing. Most of the poor people in sub-Saharan Africa, for instance, are worse off now than they were 30 years ago. Much of the current effort is based on ‘developed world’ ideas and assumptions that are untested generalizations at best; harmful miss-perceptions at worst. As a result, most of the aid and resources are wasted; simply squandered on utopian dreams, Governmental wrong-thinking and self interest, or redirected by gangsters. Before the funding is allocated to their chosen projects and interventions (typically those which reflect best on the aid donors), almost none of the intended beneficiaries is ever asked what they actually need, or if they are satisfied with the help they received, when the money is all gone. Unsurprisingly, very little of those billions has ever found its way to actually helping the world’s poor; even less to those who need it most. Risk takers and change makers hold the key to sustained economic growth in emerging markets. They are the ambitious entrepreneurs who run innovative, high-growth businesses that create jobs, opportunity and wealth in their communities. They dream of becoming the next big success story, but having launched in emerging economies, face considerable barriers to growth: few role models, a lack of trust, a limited pool of quality management, an inability to access smart capital, and insufficient contacts. Aid is not the answer. Finding ways to help poor people stand on their own feet and invest in the entrepreneurs and change-makers in their societies, is not an act of kindness, like some aid, its just common sense.

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