AP: Morocco hails to the king – but royal dominance looks out of step with change-hungry region – Every year civil servants and elected officials gather at one of King Mohammed VI’s palaces to pledge allegiance to their leader in a “quasi-religious ceremony [that] has a medieval feel at odds with Morocco’s self-proclaimed emergence as a modern democracy.” In Morocco, a country with low literacy levels and high poverty, these rituals are a key aspect of proving the crown’s authority.
LATimes: Gallup: Just 27% of the world’s adults work full time for an employer – According to a new report from Gallup, only 27 percent of people age 15 and older globally are working full time for an employer. The percentage is highest in North America, at 41 percent, but in sub-Saharan Africa, it falls to 12 percent. 20 countries had full-time employment rates of 10 percent or less – 15 of which are in sub-Saharan Africa. Gallup explained that “self-employment in the developing world tends to be subsistence work and does little to help people rise out of poverty or contribute to the economic well-being of the country.” (Tiffany Hsu)
VOA: Disappearing Herds Threaten Culture, Livelihoods in Uganda – Uganda’s pastoral Karimojong people have long relied on cattle for survival, but in an effort to wean them off of food aid, “they are being encourage to embrace agriculture – a practice that clashes with their culture and livelihoods.” Uganda’s agricultural support programs are designed to wean the Karimojong off of 30 years of food aid, yet frequent droughts in the region make agriculture an unreliable option. (Hilary Heuler)
Devex: Romney and Obama: Same on aid? – Many advocates have been up in arms over the “drastic – yet unspecified – cuts to foreign aid advocated by Paul Ryan, yet Romney and his team of advisers are still in favor of development cooperation, as “officials development assistance is becoming less important as private sector investment in the developing world increases.” Romney “may side with the budget hawks and try to trim U.S. aid operations [and] may even try to get rid of signature Obama initiatives like Feed the Future,” but the GOP’s rhetoric against foreign aid may be just that: rhetoric.” (Rolf Rosenkranz)