So, it’s that time of the year when red nose campaigners are asking us all to dig deep into our pockets to give money for charities in Africa (again).
What is it with Africa? Why is this huge continent, the supposed ‘birthplace of the human race’ in such a pathetic state that its people are not capable of looking after themselves despite thousands of years of evolution and a wealth of rich natural resources at their disposal?
African nations have a violent and bloody history, there are constant religious wars, ethnic and tribal wars, military coups and any other excuse they can find to pick up a gun or a machete to attack their neighbours with.
In Angola there has been civil war since 1989 with around half a million people killed during this internal struggle for control of oil fields and diamonds. These resources would make the country rich if they just got together and shared the wealth instead of fighting over it.
In the Democratic Republic of Congo, since 1998 five and a half million people have died in the fight over political control and access to the basic resources that this country has to offer the winners.
In Rwanda there was widespread genocide committed in 1994 by warring tribes resulting in the horrific murder of half a million people.
Corrupt governments murder and torture their own people in many African countries such as Zimbabwe, Nigeria and many others. Even now in 2013 there is violence, intimidation and widespread murder and political corruption during the so called democratic elections in Kenya.
These are but a few examples of hundreds of ongoing and past conflicts across a continent which is slowly destroying itself through the ignorance, violence and greed of its own people. And what is the response of the ‘civilised west’ to this problem? We throw money at it. Billions and billions of pounds in taxpayers’ money and charitable donations are thrown away and the ‘sponge of Africa’ continues to soak it all up.
Here is a quote from the Guardian Newspaper –
“Conflicts in Africa since the end of the cold war have cost the continent £150bn, equivalent to all the foreign aid it has received over the same period, according to a report released by Oxfam today.
The study, Africa’s Missing Billions, says that almost half of the countries on the continent have been involved in some form of conflict since 1990 at a substantial cost to lives and development.”
It is a clear and simple fact that throwing money at this conflict ravaged continent is never going to cure its ills. The money is wasted, and I for one am sick to death of being asked to give for Africa. It isn’t money these people need, it is education, civilisation and a dirty great dose of morality.