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close this bookBottle-necks of Development in Africa (HABITAT)
View the document(introduction...)
View the document1. The absence of peace and security.
View the document2. Destructive style of political and economic leadership
View the document3. A frustrated democratization process.
View the document4. Inadequate international cooperation
View the document5. Little technology transfer
View the document6. International debt
View the document7. Corruption
View the document8. The international market injures Africa
View the document9. Poverty
View the document10. Population pressure
View the document11. Sustained hunger and poor health
View the document12. Illiteracy and ignorance
View the document13. Over - use of foreign languages
View the document14. Destroyed traditional knowledge, and spiritual heritage.
View the document15. What then?

6. International debt

Organizations like Transparency International and others which study the illegal transfer of capital from Africa to the rich northern countries give reasons to suggest that a large portion of funds which are advanced to Africa by the international community for development are stolen and stashed away in secret bank accounts in developed countries. Much secrecy surrounds these financial transactions and it is still not good politics to raise such issues. But it is suggested that if these funds were made available to an uncorrupt Africa the continent would need no more aid and grants. Yet Africans are collectively blamed as corrupt and many donors now explain their unwillingness to support Africa by arguing that assisting Africa is like pouring money into a rat hole.

We continue to raise this issue because we believe that one way to assist Africa economically and to end the often-spoken- about 'donor fatigue' would be to locate these funds and return them to Africa or to the World Bank and IMF and to any other international donors agencies which advanced them. Instead of advocating for charity and forgiving Africa her international debts, it should be possible to retrieve all stolen capital and return it to the original owners since it was never used for the purpose for which it was advanced. This would demonstrate that indeed there can be new global values and ethics referred to by the Commission on Global Governance in its recent report, Our Global Neighborhood. It would be a matter of being just, fair and responsible to the ordinary African on whose behalf the funds were borrow and from whom' repay me as are demanded. Other wise,man3future generations of Africans will be born already deeply in debt and already deeply immersed in poverty. Such people cannot play any role in international trade and are at the risk of being-turned into 'commodities.