The Resource Curse & The Gates Foundation : A Lion in a sheep skin

We all should have known better that Mother Africa was never just a Mothter for Africa itself but for the rest of the Globe as well,either you like it or not,and no matter the ancient civilizations,it has always been mother Africa providing everything to us,from science to civilization,even though it was so left behind  so left that it’s considered to be the 3rd world.If you all think that the USA or Europe are NOT the 4th world already,then I am fine with the definition of the 3rd world. But,First you will have to prove it to me,No matter how many LonminMarikana strikes its gonna take.NONE of the civilized world residents would ever ever get involved in a bloody strike like the Marikana one,just for their families,just for them to have a better life. Get educated.Read behind the lines.Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery.None but ourselves can free our minds.

Get rid of any stereotypes.Live in brotherhood

I recently attended an interesting discussion organized by the Gates Foundation on managing natural resource revenues for human development.  The idea is being how do you convert natural resource wealth into broadly distributed human capital, which will lay the ground for equitable and sustainable growth.  This issue is particularly timely given recent discoveries of oil, gas and minerals in many African countries, including Ghana, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Mozambique.

So far, the track record for effectively managing natural resource wealth has been pretty dismal with very few countries successfully using their natural resource wealth to promote sustained economic growth and poverty reduction.  In fact, many countries have not only squandered their resources but their economic performance has actually worsened in many cases, leading to what is often referred to as “the resource curse.”  Indeed, people in lower-income, resource-rich countries generally fare consistently worse in health and education outcomes than what would be predicted by their level of income. Equatorial Guinea is a case in point, albeit an extreme one. Its GDP per capita is $23,133 (32nd in the world just ahead of South Korea). However, three-quarters of its population lives in poverty (2006) and it ranks 136th on the Human Development Index (2012).

It’s welcome news that people are talking about how human capital should be one important pillar of a strategy for using natural resources for development purposes.  It is critical that investments in people – and not just in infrastructure – are seen as investments in the future of resource-rich countries. Arguably, returns on investment in education, health and nutrition may dominate other options, especially when some aspects of human capital are taken into account, notably its flexibility, mobility and cumulative nature.  Children’s cognitive development, school performance and future productivity are compromised in the absence of early attention to nutrition and care (Shonkoff et al., 2012). Conversely, when children thrive with access to good learning environments and adequate health services, their skills can be used flexibly across different economic activities and are not tied down to a particular location.

This does not mean, however, that earmarking natural resource revenues to the education and health sectors is necessarily the right thing to do.  In recent months, Brazil’s president, Dilma Rousseff, has sent lawmakers proposals to earmark all oil royalties collected by the state for public education. Brazil’s Congress appears to have limited appetite for the idea, and perhaps for good reasons. First, earmarking has the disadvantage of balkanizing the budget and reducing flexibility to change expenditure allocations when faced with legitimate changes in priorities. Second, throwing more money at the supply side does not always lead to improvements in human development outcomes. We know that there is a tenuous link between the level of spending and the status of education and health outcomes, and often guaranteed resources are not likely to encourage greater efficiency.  Third, in view of the pro-rich bias that pervades most budgetary spending, more resources do not necessarily translate into more services for the needy.

There is a strong case to be made for making sure that at least part of the natural resource wealth of poor, resource-rich countries is converted into human capital. However, how this is done requires considerable thought.  Putting more money in the hands of government ministries to do business as usual is clearly not the answer.  While there is no silver bullet for building accountable institutions, we know that it helps to focus both on boosting demand for quality services and ensuring that providers are responsive to the needs of the population.  Some examples of effective programs that deliver on these objectives include conditional cash transfer programs, such as Bolsa Familia and Oportunidades. These programs have successfully boosted school attendance and preventive health care utilization among the poor in addition to reducing poverty (Fiszbein and Shady, 2009).  Even unconditional transfer programs can lead to increased demand for services as households use their added income to invest in their children.

On the supply side, results (or performance) based financing can nudge providers to make services work for poor people. Gerler and Vermeersch cite Argentina’s Plan Nacer and Rwanda’s pay for performance schemes as having demonstrated how provider behavior is responsive to financial incentives, with both programs leading to enhanced health services utilization among women and children in poor communities.

The Gates Foundation is well placed to make a positive difference for people living in resource-rich countries for many generations to come, provided it embraces the importance of incentives and accountability in delivering services for better human outcomes and builds on promising interventions.

Now read BEFORE you weep,although im pretty sure you’ve read all that already,well,re-re-re-re- read them. Better re-read them and get the point than saying oh ok everthings  fine here. Some are still trying (readabove thingy) to make wrong look as the right thing to do.

Monsanto Plants Its Lies in the Gates Foundation-funded NPR

At least 50 African children paralyzed after receiving Bill Gates-backed meningitis vaccine

Global Health Projects: Africa-Regional
Information and Communication Technology Projects: Africa-Regional

Dr. Rath rages against Bill Gates and the African Aids Conspiracy

Herman Chinery-Hesse, co-founder of the Ghanian software company theSOFTtribe, discusses software development in Africa.[SHAME SHAME ON YOU PEOPLE]

Africa: Bill Gates Calls on G20 Leaders Not to Turn Their Backs on the World’s Poor [Huh AllAfrica?]

Monsanto’s “Unlikely” New Business Partner — A Name You Know Well…

Bill Gates said “We can lower the Population With Vaccines and Health Care”

A Critical Examination of Bill Gates’ Philanthropic Record

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