The recent rejection of food Aid by CARE International as quoted in the New York Times brings to the fore the negative effect of aid to Africa. CARE turned down some $45 million worth of donations in what it pointed out to be a threat to crop production to local farmers.
The system of importing food from American agribusiness has been found to be flawed and has survived partly because the charities that receive money from it defend it. It is also argued that the domestic farm policies in the United States are the ones shaping hunger-fighting methods in Africa. Africans need to understand the motivation behind aid and realize that no one is really out to help, they are all pushing their own agenda: creating markets for their products.
The sentiments by CARE international are a wake up call that the aid industry need to be reformed. From the ongoing debate between CARE and other aid agencies it is clear that poverty in Africa is engineered.
By Anne Mugoya
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