14 March 2018

Will money, or structural change save Africa from celebrities?

1 billion people live in Africa
Since I was child there has been starvation in Africa, but fifty years on and in the run up to Sports Relief is it not now the time to acknowledge that the traditional approach to the African crisis is not working and that an alternative approach that focuses on structural change and increased equality across Africa is the way forward.

There are some African economic success stories, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa (although SA remains one of the most unequal society in the world) and promoting these and learning from their experience will, I believe, raise more money for those suffering than marketing Africa as a melting pot of illness, death and disease.

It's also time, perhaps, to listen more carefully to the people that actually live and work in Africa and listen a good deal less to those celebrities employed by charities and especially those celebrities who have avoided taxes and unearned fortunes at the same time as asking people less wealthy than themselves to dig deep.

If you want something to change then doing the same thing over and over again simply won't work. Maybe now is the time for a more positive approach to Africa where charitable organisations develop a different approach to the enduring and  complex problems that Africa faces and instead of having to put endless sticking plasters on Africa's problems, charities should work towards tackling the root causes of suffering and aim to reconstruct the economic and cultural support systems the Imperialist Europeans dismantled in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, as well as devising ways to compensate the African people for the resources, the gold, diamonds and oil, that the colonisers stole from them. 

More information
Imperialism is the idea that dives the practice of Colonialism i.e. taking over of a country's government systems and culture by force. Colonisation is enforcing control on one country by another.
Slavery and the Scramble for Africa

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