Poverty Archives - ROAPE
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Poverty Tag

Moses E. Ochonu writes that the increase of poverty in Africa from the 1980s, exacerbated by neoliberal reforms, opened the door to the veneration of entrepreneurship as a remedy for mass poverty. Looking at the history of entrepreneurship on the continent, Ochonu sees a mobile and malleable category which has little in common with the neoliberal fetishization of personal responsibility....

Two reports from Kenya and Nigeria look at the impact of the pandemic in different areas of life on the continent. Nyambura Kamau writes how people have been advised to wash hands regularly with running water and soap but even the term ‘running water’ in Mathare - a collection of informal settlements in Nairobi - is a cruel mirage. While Lai Brown reports on the struggles of woman in Nigeria. For many women it is a case of a triple attack - there is the viral offensive in the streets, and hunger and domestic abuse inside homes....

In a critique of Rwanda’s Green Revolution, An Ansoms argues that the promise of the ‘reconfiguration of the rural landscape’ has failed. Food price inflation rose rapidly while the economies-of-scale of the new system were captured by middlemen and local elites. Yet, the World Bank and the IMF persist in using the so-called Rwandan ‘success story’ to sell neo-liberal policy packages as the panacea for Africa’s development. However opportunities for alternative voices are opening up and criticism is also being picked up by Rwandan policy makers....

In a celebration of Andre Gunder Frank and Walter Rodney, David Seddon looks at two men who have had a profound influence on generations of activists and researchers. Gunder Frank regarded underdevelopment in the Third World as a direct consequence of the development of Western capitalism. While Rodney followed some of the arguments of Gunder Frank and described how Africa had been exploited by European imperialism leading directly to the underdevelopment of most of the continent....

In the third interview in the series, Talking Back, Rama Salla Dieng speaks to Divine Fuh. Divine Fuh talks about his research on the economic, political, religious and social crises in Cameroon and how young men have been forced to create new criteria for endorsement as ‘successful men’ with the collapse of salaried achievement. In a wide-ranging interview he also discusses his work with CODESRIA in Dakar, fathering, feminism, masculinity, Afrophobia and social anthropology....

Lena Grace Anyuolo describes the hunger games of capitalism in Kenya. In this diabolical world where the sponsors of jobs and healthcare are corporations, or rich individuals and media personalities who have the power to deliver life from poverty or fund-raise for a lifesaving medical procedure. Anyuolo is scathing about a form of existence where life or death depends on philanthropy or whether or not your story is worthy of a prime-time slot on TV. ...

Recently the Financial Times published an investigation carried out by their data analysis team, which confirmed the findings that have been published on roape.net on poverty in Rwanda over several years. Of all the countries in the world for which there is data, only South Sudan has experienced a faster increase in poverty over the past decade. Rwanda’s official poverty statistics are verifiably false. The government, supported by the World Bank, is involved in a tragic debacle in which the poor are the real victims. ...

The rise of a global technology industry to support financial services, known as fin-tech, has grown enormously in Africa in the last decade. Across the continent many commentators have proclaimed fin-tech as the solution to poverty and development. Examining the case of Kenya’s celebrated fin-tech model, M-Pesa, Milford Bateman, Maren Duvendack and Nicholas Loubere reveal a flawed system that is not an answer to poverty, despite the wild claims of some academic commentators. Quite the contrary, fin-tech offers Africa a further case study of how contemporary capitalism continues to under-develop Africa....

Chinedu Chukwudinma argues that the proliferation of strikes before and after the downfall of Algeria’s President Abdelaziz Bouteflika suggests that only the working class has the power to lead Algerian society to liberation. Chukwudinma looks at the history of workers’ struggles and assesses the possibilities for the future. ...

In a blogpost drawing attention to the large number of suicides by immolation in Tunisia, Habib Ayeb explains that there has been an average of between 250 to 300 suicides per year since 2011. These desperate political acts are intended to draw attention to the dire social and political conditions experienced by millions of Tunisians in the years since the revolution (and the suicide of Mohamed Bouazizi in December 2010). Translated by Max Ajl, the blogpost looks at the origins of the Tunisian revolution, and broken promises. ...