Sunday, June 7, 2009

CAUSES AND RAMIFICATIONS OF HUNGER IN AFRICA

When the world is marching towards a new horizon with the advancement in science and technology,the African nations are still living in the dark age.Poverty, hunger,malnutrition,illiteracy all these problems make social development virtually impossible in Africa.Even when United Nations aims of a hunger free world,hunger remains an unanswered question in Africa.The reasons behind this menace are many.
Firstly, political instability and lack of democratic institutions are important factors behind hunger in Africa.After the African nations gained independence,dictatorship and military rule have captured the continent.Government atrocities led people to revolt, civil wars began and the question of food security remained unanswered.
The divisions of boundaries according to the convenience of colonial powers led to power struggle among major tribal and ethnic groups in most of the African nations. Power was grabbed by a few using undemocratic means which was to be held by force.
In the process, the common people were left unattended and lack of democratic rights made them vulnerable to poverty, unemployment, malnutrition illiteracy -- all of which led to the creation of vicious circle where hunger was the cause as well as effect of the political instability and lack of good governance. Examples can be seen in Ethiopia, Somalia, Congo, Sudan, and Rwanda – just to name a few.
Almost all the African nations suffer from illiteracy,unemployment and lack of social awareness.Without making progress in these key social issues, achievement of food security seems impossible there.
Other causes include corruption of the officials, failure in exploiting the physical,human and natural resources of the nation,underdeveloped agriculture,absence of an effective distribution system etc.
The ramifications of the problem are listed below.
  • It has led to mass migration of the people from drought and strife hit areas to neighboring countries.
  • Tribal wars and community clashes for the rights of food,land and water as is happening in Sudan
  • Developing countries are keen to provide help only for getting access to their rich mineral resources.
  • Waiving loans and debts apart from increasing aid to these countries by G-8 nations
  • Hunger has aggravated AIDS problems in Africa which needs to be tackled immediately.
Establishment of democratic rule,UN intervention to stop civil wars,proper utilization of International and domestic resources are the ways and means to combat the menace of hunger in Africa.


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