Uganda: Experts Rap Donors Over Poverty

New Vision (Kampala)

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Anne Mugisa

Research experts have accused donors of deliberately undermining poverty eradication efforts on the African continent by withholding financial and technical commitments.

Only 30% of the donor commitments have been dispersed, said Prof. Mohammed Salih the chairman of Politics of Development at the Institute of Social Studies in the Hague.

He said 70% of the financial and technical commitments are never delivered and yet the donors, including the World Bank and the International monetary Fund (IMF), expect the African countries to perform perfectly.

The researchers were meeting yesterday for a two-day regional conference on poverty reduction for Uganda, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi and Rwanda, at the Grand Imperial Hotel in Kampala.

Salih noted that the failure by the World Trade Organisation to yield concessions for Africa was a stumbling block to development.

He said the protectionist agricultural subsidies by Europe and US to their farmers further impedes Africa from effectively competing in the global market.

Salih said there was need to engage in poverty eradication research instead of relying on the unrealistic and sometimes concocted figures from the West.

He advised African countries to have joint research teams to tackle their own issues and find out how they could benefit from each other.

Three researchers, Godfrey Bahiigwa, Dr. Richard Ssewakiryanga and Dr. Kenneth Mugambe, pointed out in their separate researches that Uganda's poverty programmes were good but affected by policy inconsistencies.

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They also said the poverty situation in Uganda was related to the shifting relations with the donors.

Jean-Louis Kayitenkore
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