Development aid does more harm than good in Africa, says Zambian economist and author Dambisa Moyo, so we should stop it. She has the ear of at least one African president, Paul Kagame of Rwanda. 'Why should Bono be the one to determine economic policy in Africa?
It was during her studies at Harvard that she first started wondering why Africa is the only continent that is forever struggling. Later, as she was working on her thesis at Oxford, she tried to figure out why poor Asian countries like South Korea or Thailand managed to join the world of emerging nations when no African country did. For the next eight years, she worked for the US investment bank Goldman Sachs. Gradually her conviction grew stronger: Africa will never get on its feet unless it makes a clean break with the system of development aid.
It is aid itself that is keeping Africa poor. This in a nutshell, is the argument Moyo develops in the first half of her book, Dead Aid, which came out last month. She is referring only to government aid, not to emergency humanitarian aid or charity. "Development aid simply doesn't work," she says. "It was supposed to lead to sustainable economic growth and a reduction of poverty. Name one African country where this has happened."
Dead Aid caused a sensation in Great Britain. Here was a young, successful, educated African woman trespassing in a world dominated by middle-aged white men. Economist like William Easterley and Jeffrey Sachs. Rock stars like Bono and Bob Geldof. What's more: she was arguing for pulling the plug on development aid.
Good. Not only will letting them stand on their own feet do them good, it will do them even more good. And if you need more proof that I'm right:
"The danger is that this book will get more attention than it deserves," wrote The Guardian. "Her proposal to phase out aid in five years is disastrously irresponsible: it would lead to the closure of thousands of schools and clinics across Africa, and an end to the HIV antiretroviral, malaria and TB programmes, along with emergency food supplies, on which millions of lives depend.
As usual, the Graniaud is ignoring decades of evidence in favour of their patronising racism.
Development aid doesn't develop and it doesn't aid. Plus, stopping it will save the taxpayer some money. AND it will fuck off the liberals.
What's not to like?