Why does Africa remain in extreme poverty? As the old saying goes, where there is poverty, there is corruption. Although blame can partially be placed on lingering effects of colonialism and lack of infrastructure, a vast portion of it must fall on the back of internal political corruption. A recent New York Times op-ed article documented the situation in the . Although it spoke to signs of emerging change in the air, it also demonstrated the effects of years of political corruption. Even the genocide was prompted by uprisings in the black population, responding to social and economic inequalities favoring the Arab ruling elite over the majority black population.
Political corruption can be found everywhere. Even in the , considered the pinnacle of democracy, we see politicians selling themselves to corporate interests. What distinguishes Africa from the world and leads to vast continental poverty is infiltration of corruption to the civil service positions. Such corruption creates a culture of self service and disregard for the situations of others. Corrupted civil servants hinder the poorest of African inhabitants from ever escaping their undesirable situations by polluting every aspect of society, from education to the economy.
A 2002 article from BBC news reported that internal corruption costs Africa nearly 150 billion dollars a year, as estimated by the African Union. Under the table style corruption severely punishes Africa ‘s already impoverished population. Rapid inflation coincided with decrease in foreign investment paralyze the economy while decreasing potential for future growth.
Aside from economic ramifications, the affects of corruption ring loud throughout daily life. A June 2004 BBC report mentioned that Cameroonian hospitals often operated for under the table bribes, often leaving patients seeking medical care with no assistance.
Schools often pass students on examinations if bribed with money. The corruption can be felt throughout society consequences are frequently irreversible.
In order for Africa to escape extreme poverty it must address the extreme corruption spiraling out of control. The Supranatural organization of the African Union must play a leading role in generating changes. Although many symbolic anti corruption laws have been passed, they have hardly been enforced, allowing for the lawlessness to continue. The world community must also be vigilant and hold the governments corrupting society from the top accountable by avoiding economic interactions that will only fatten the pockets of African politicians. It is critical for humanity that Africa no longer remain the scar on the conscience of mankind and a change is long overdue.