Président de la Commission de l’Union Africaine (depuis le 1er. février 2008)
Speaking during a group discussion on how to mobilise resources, delegates to the second NEPAD multi-stakeholders dialogue criticised what they say is too much dependence on external donors in funding development programmes.
They said despite a big increase in Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) to Africa it is not sensible to count on external donor assistance as there is a gap between what is promised and what is provided.
Felix Ndukwe of the African Development Bank (AfDB) said for Africa to truly own its development agenda it must find a way out of donor dependence.
He called for the expansion of Africa’s tax base to include more taxpayers than is now the case in the continent.
“We need to expand the tax base, develop capital and financial markets within the African continent as well as creating a conducive micro-economic environment for foreign direct investments to flow in,” he said.
Dr. Tajudeen Abdul-Raheem, deputy director for Africa for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) expressed astonishment at the readiness of some African governments to fund wars without seeking external financial support.
“It is an interesting scenario where governments think inward when it comes to funding wars. But when it comes to education and health they seek external support saying there is no funding”.
He said such political will in funding wars should be shifted into funding development programmes for sustainable growth in Africa.
However, he cautioned that once resources are mobilised domestically there is a need to observe good governance to ensure that mobilised resources are used for the intended goals.
Abdul-Raheem said absence of good governance might demoralise those spearheading the efforts to mobilise domestic resources.
Earlier during the dialogue, lack of resources was mentioned as one of the major obstacles in implementing NEPAD programmes.
Source : nepad news, novembre 3, 2006