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First came Madonna . ..Then the Chinese. .

Dr.  George Ayittey, reacting to the news that Paris Hilton is off to save Africa!

Ghanadot, Oct. 17, 2007

 

Folks, We can't save ourselves.

 

Our LEADERS have been a monumental failure -- totally useless. Since1960, we have had 204 heads of state. Try and see if you can name just10 "good leaders." Just ten. Even if you could name 20, what would thattell you about the rest -- the overwhelming 90+ percent?

 

Failures. There are only 3 things our leaders know how to do efficiently:

 

1. Perpetuate themselves in office -- 10, 20 or more years: Campaore (Burkina Faso), Biya (Cameroon), Ghaddafi (Libya), Mubarak (Egypt), Mugabe (Zimbabwe), Museveni  (Uganda), dos Santos (Angola). Need more?

 

2. Squelch all dissent and opposition to their misrule.

 

3. Pillage and loot their treasury.

 

* According to one UN estimate, "$200 billion or 90 percent of thesub-Saharan part of the continent's gross domestic product (much of it illicitly earned), was shipped to foreign banks in 1991 alone" (The New York Times (Feb 4, 1996; p.A4).

 

* According to former Nigerian President, Olusegun Obasanjo, thatcorrupt African leaders have stolen at least $140 billion from theirpeople in the decades since independence (London Independent, June 14,2002. Web posted at www. independent.co.uk).

 

* Foreign aid has not been spared, either. Says The Economist (Jan 17,2004): "For every dollar that foolish northerners lent Africa between1970 and 1996, 80 cents flowed out as capital flight in the same year, typically into Swiss bank accounts or to buy mansions on the Coted’Azur” (Survey; p.12).

At the Commonwealth Summit in Abuja, Nigeria on December 3, 2003, former British secretary of state for international development, Rt. Hon Lynda Chalker, revealed that 40 per cent of wealth created in Africa is invested outside the continent. Chalker said African economies would have fared better if the wealth created on the continent were retained within.

 

"If you can get your kith and kin tobring the funds back and have it invested in infrastructure, the economies of African countries would be much better than what there are today, she said (This Day [Lagos], Dec 4, 2003).

 

* In August 2004, an African Union report claimed that Africa loses an estimated $148 billion annually to corrupt practices, a figure which represents 25 percent of the continent's Gross Domestic Product (GDP).“Mr. Babatunde Olugboji, Chairman, Independent Advocacy Project, made this revelation in Lagos while addressing the press on the survey scheduled to be embarked upon by the body to determine the level of corruption in the country even though Transparency International has rated Nigeria as the second most corrupt nation in the world” (Vanguard,Lagos, Aug 6, 2004. Web posted at www.allafrica.com).

 

* Between 1970 and 2004, more than $450 billion in oil revenue flowed into Nigerian government coffers. But according to Mallam Nuhu Ribadu,the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, set up three years ago, 220 billion ($412 billion) was "squandered" between independence from Britain in 1960 and the return of civilian rule in1999. "We cannot be accurate down to the last figure but that is our projection," Osita Nwajah, a commission spokesman (Telegraph, June 25,2005).

 

NOTE:

A. Foreign aid to Africa from ALL sources amounts to $25 billion year.

B. OUR POLITICIANS are more interested in passing legislation to increase their salaries and perks (shiny models of Mercedes Benzes) than attending to the needs of the people.

C. OUR OPPOSITION FORCES are hopeless -- fragmented and given to incessant squabbling and stabbling each other in the back. Worse, some of the opposition leaders are themselves "closet dictators," exhibiting the same autocratic tendencies they loudly condemn in the leaders theyhope to replace.

D. OUR INTELLECTUALS OR THE "EDUCATED" -- the "gu-nu-gu" crowd.{"Gu-nu-gu" is a Sierra Leonian term for "human buzzards." We all have the "pull-him-down" (Ph.D.) DNA embedded in our genes. We rip each other to pieces.

 

So now everybody wants to save us in Africa. First came Madonna . ..Then the Chinese. . . Now it is Paris Hilton. See this link:  Ms. Hilton.  Rich Girl, Party Animal
 

Lord save us.

 

George Ayittey, Ph.D. Washington, DC, October 17, 2007

Photo by: Abod

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
   



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First came Madonna . ..Then the Chinese. .

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