why is Africa poor


Or better still, how did/ does Europe underdevelop Africa?

Before some of you start throwing stones, I have only reframed this question from quora

Why are some former British colonies like Canada and Australia well off while former colonies in Africa are poor?

Well, they are white and Africa is black/ brown. Look at India & North America. Same thing. They are brown.

Africa did not industrialize but remained a next importer of produced goods, whose prices fluctuate depending on the weather and this is bad in the long term.

Africa’s produce is exported as raw material and sold back at very high prices.

When many African countries got independence 50-60 years ago, thieves, idiots and collaborators took the reigns of power and then their sons. Where anti-imperialists took over, they were summarily killed with help from the West.

Did I already say trade agreements that are unfavourable to Africa. Now I have said it.

Then there is that World Bank program of the 1980s- Structural Adjustment Programs that did finally mess a struggling continent.

The education the first generation of African leaders received was as clerks or worse- i mean clergy, for example. No philosopher kings, no science degrees and this coupled with European admins who were misfits at home or had failed at anything they tried to do.

Well, there are many other reasons that have been put forth but these are the ones that come to me easily.

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About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

33 thoughts on “why is Africa poor

  1. Mordanicus says:

    In my opinion, the so-called “decolonization” was actually a form of neo-colonialism – in which colonial powers were simply replaced by international organizations, such as the IMF, world bank, WTO and so on, to exert indirect rule on non-western countries.

    The main reason for this move, is simple for colonial powers to avoid responsibility for their “former” colonies. By making your former overseas possessions “independent”, their local governments are responsible for any screw up – instead of that of the colonial power’s.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Tish Farrell says:

    Am with you on all points, Mak. Daylight robbery all round, and continues to be so. Keeping people impoverished in their own countries so corporations can loot resources without paying their taxes of course cuts down transportation annoyance and stock losses of the Atlantic ‘Middle Passage’.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. maryplumbago says:

    This is interesting. I looked at another blog earlier about Pakistan and India ..their history…and the thought came to me that world history is so important to know about if we want an educated people and an understanding of how the world runs..the good and the bad. With understanding comes solutions.

    Without this knowledge we are doomed to repeat and repeat over and over again. So many countries, especially the US, want to be isolated in their arrogant position that they are the best, the smartest and the most moral!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Nan says:

      Mary, what you say about the U.S. is valid; however, I think you would agreed the superiority complex you reference has become much worse under tRumpsky.

      Liked by 2 people

      • maryplumbago says:

        Absolutely it has. It’s been unleashed into a worshipping cult. The trick is how to subdue it…get it back in its cage…

        Liked by 2 people

        • basenjibrian says:

          I think it is a bit more complicated than that. Trump, to me, is a result of a sense of panic among some in the (largely white) American population that their position, their value, is not AUTOMATICALLY of high value. They feel threatened, so they react blindly.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. renudepride says:

    All of what you suggested in the post are true. Then there appeared the Cold War and the rush to ensure Africa remained loyal to the American or Soviet regimes. Lives and money were sacrificed in pursuit of the arms race. Naked hugs!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. basenjibrian says:

    I like your summary because it acknowledges local agency-thieving local elites, as well as the nefarious impacts of colonialism. The horrific Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade had African participants, after all.

    Curious about your opinions on the NEW colonialism-China, of course. Defenders of the Middle Kingdom claim this is all new, all benign, etc. And, it seems like the African countries are getting infrastructure from it. But, the net goal seems to be, again, exporting raw materials to the great (now Chinese) Manufacturing Machine. Although one source claimed China’s ultimate goal is to move completely up the economic ladder, with Africa and places like Myanmar taking on the basic manufacturing.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Mordanicus says:

      Imho, China is basically copying Western-style neo-colonialism but without any concern for human rights. Any claimed difference is just propaganda.

      Liked by 1 person

      • makagutu says:

        If you ask me, China at least are being honest. The western countries only pay lip service to human rights violations. They will continue to train and arm the police even if its members are guilty of extra judicial killings. Right now the catch phrase is terrorism and a lot of violations go on because of it.
        But to make the citizens happy, the west will pretend to make noise about human rights violations and then sell weapons, militarize the police and so on.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Mordanicus says:

          I don’t disagree and I would even go a step further. This so-called concern for human rights is just a pretext to be able to intervene in former colonies using the principle of “responsibility to protect” as an excuse.

          Like

    • makagutu says:

      Take our case for example. There is little difference between the countries, if you ask me. The Chinese built us a railway that we don’t need. The US wants to build us a road next to the railway we don’t need. It is claimed at the end, China wants to have easy trade routes for raw materials from Africa to its industries- no different from what Europe did at the end of colonialism.

      With better leadership, we would have done much better. So Africans must take responsibility for the mess we find ourselves in.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. “he education the first generation of African leaders received was as clerks or worse- i mean clergy, for example. No philosopher kings, no science degrees and this coupled with European admins who were misfits at home or had failed at anything they tried to do.” That so much seems to be a major reason. Incompetence all the way around.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. All this is true. However, it isn’t anything new. All of human history has been stained by one group of people exploiting and oppressing another. Japanese imperialism of the early to mid 20th century, European colonialism, the Norman invasions, the Mayans, the Ottoman Empire, the Huns, Genghis Khan, Rome, the Chinese dynasties, Alexander the Great, Persia, Egypt, the Kingdom of Kush (Nubia), and on and on the list goes. It’s who we are, sadly.

    Liked by 4 people

    • makagutu says:

      I agree totally.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Mordanicus says:

      True. Though classical imperialism was more honest than the current system of neo-colonialism. Conquerors did not pretend that subjugated people were “independent”.

      Liked by 1 person

      • basenjibrian says:

        Hmmmm. I think many empires were less centralized, though. The Aztecs, for example, largely kept local rulers in place, as long as the ever-growing demand for captives’ hearts to keep the sun in the sky was met. Blue Hummingbird on the Left was a HUNGRY God, after all!

        Even the Romans relied on local leadership, I understand.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Mordanicus says:

          Local leadership is indirect rule. This does not, however, negates the fact that conquered people were subjugated to the imperial authorities, just that the paramount rulers did not bother themselves with indulging themselves with the rather mundane issues of day-to-day governance of their subjects.

          So in decentralized empires, the relation between local rulers and their suzerains was still clear and obvious to all. There were no pretenses to independence, just some degree of autonomy for non-important issues.

          The neo-colonial system continues this practice of indirect, decentral rule but with the illusion of nominal sovereignty.

          Liked by 2 people

  8. Oh my gosh this is exactly…EXACTLY what my mom and I say

    Like

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    Like

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