The Huffington Post is running a piece by Dr. Alex G. Coutinho critiquing Dambisa Moyo’s book Dead Aid. You can follow our coverage of this Hot Topic here.
Excerpts below, full piece here
Africa’s problems are predominantly those of a systematic failure to harness the full potential of its people. Countries that first invest in their people by educating them, protecting their health and providing opportunities inside and outside their countries are those countries that have progressed, with stable economies, a higher GDP and “happiness factor.” In addition countries like India and China have huge internal markets which give these countries considerable insulation from export-driven economic vagaries.
Africa needs to focus on social development — health, education and job creation, while at the same time developing its production capacities and as large an internal market as possible. The other necessary ways forward are, of course, visionary leadership, eradication of corruption, good stewardship of natural resources and, for a while at least, management of Africa’s burgeoning population till generated resources can support larger populations.
I do share the same aspiration for a prosperous Africa that is not dependent on crumbs from the rich. Nonetheless we are now in an interconnected global economy and global destiny and the solutions to underdevelopment do include aid — albeit aid that is linked to social welfare and development, rather than aid to build up armies or aid in return for mortgaging the natural wealth of a country to another “model” development partner.