Despite the billions earmarked for the world’s efforts to help Africa unshackle itself from extreme poverty, not much has changed.

By Samuel Getachew (Huffington Post Canada) |

To Canada’s Brian Stewart — the veteran journalist who helped uncover the Ethiopian famine of 1984 to the world, long before Bob Geldof made it an infamous milestone in the world of charity-giving and imprinted extreme poverty as synonymous with Ethiopia — the East African country is still a country the world cannot stop worrying about.

Then again, how could the world not do that, when the images of young famine-stricken faces are still fresh in our minds after so many decades? Because of this tragedy, the world has made Ethiopia a popular destination for its pity and charitable gestures; yet extreme poverty still remains high. There are still millions in need of emergency food aid and many suffering from extreme poverty.

The award-winning journalist has since observed, despite some dotted positive advancements, that “Ethiopia cannot yet feed itself without the help of the rest of the world” and the “unpredictability of this help means the threat of severe food crises, even famine, is never far away.” That is a sad reality.

The Economist — the world’s most influential business voice that once bragged about Ethiopia’s new status as “Africa’s fastest growing non-energy economy,” has now begun to write a number of critical articles about Ethiopia. With the Dutch-based flower grower, Esmeralda Farms, recently losing 10 million Euros from its investment in Bahir Dar because of the recent civil unrest.

I wonder what impact this could have on potential investors to Ethiopia. With less potential investors, Ethiopia will likely not be able to afford to offer the social safety net it needs to its most vulnerable citizens.

Continue reading this story on Huffington Post Canada
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