Africa needs more facts and fewer words from the G8 -ActionAid
After citing a series of broken promises from previous summits of the group of the eight most industrialized nations in the world, ActionAid called for fairer trade, more and better aid, debt reductions, more money to fight the AIDS epidemic, and measures to stop global warming.
“The G8 has been making great statements about Africa for 10 years. In that time, it has continued to drag African countries into policies that have hurt them, “said Steve Tibbett of ActionAid UK.
The British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has made removing Africa from the hole of poverty and disease one of the fundamental elements of his presidency year at the head of the G8.
Created in 1972 as a British NGO working in the poorest countries of the world, ActionAid opened two years ago one of its main offices in Johannesburg and has become one of the most important development organizations in the world.
In a report published on Monday for the G8 summit to be held between July 6 and 8 at the prestigious Gleneagles hotel near Edinburgh, ActionAid wanted to take its message home.
It tells that almost nine African children die every minute of preventable diseases, 45 million are denied access to basic education and hundreds of millions face hunger.
Other G8 summits have pledged to cut the debt, to cope with climate warming, to give more aid, to massively improve access to water and sanitation and to make the rules of trade more just. But until now, the commitments have been little more than hollow words.
‘The G8 leaders have used the previous summits to make great speeches about the war on poverty. But based on the evidence from the past, they are shooting blank, “the report said.
‘This is the time to act. Africa is at the top of the international agenda and the G8 faces a unique opportunity to help transform the region’s prospects, “he added.
ActionAid urged the G8 to stop flooding African markets with subsidized products and to push local producers out of the market, to open their own markets to African products and to cut prices of vital drugs and improve aid.
He also encouraged them to fulfill their eternal promise of spending 0.7 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in development, an amount that no one approaches.
Africa is beginning to help itself, but the economic recovery and the arrival of peace in several countries is still fragile and needs urgent and disinterested aid from the G8, the report said.
“Failure to face this challenge will be judged harshly by the millions of people who will be mobilized in 2005 for change, as well as history,” he concluded.
/ By Jeremy Lovell /
- Africa needs more facts and fewer words from the G8 -ActionAid
“> Africa needs more facts and fewer words from the G8 – ActionAid