By Steven Wöndu
June 14, 2013 – Africa boasts the dubious distinction of being the least developed continent on earth. This is true whether one is thinking of economic, social or political development. As teenage students in the 1960s and 1970s, we debated the causes of Africa’s stagnation. Two explanations emerged; ignorance and poverty.
Early this month African Heads of State and Governments assembled in Yokohama to deliberate on how Africa can break the vicious circle of underdevelopment. The leaders were accompanied by their respective countries’ economic experts (inter alia). United Nations and Western aid agencies were present. The Vatican and immerging economies like Malaysia, Indonesia and Brazil sent delegates. The Tokyo International Conference on Africa’s Development (TICAD) process is the Japanese government’s vehicle for pulling Africa out of its economic quagmire. TICAD convenes to mobilize Official Development Aid (ODA) and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for Africa and to set new development benchmarks beyond 2015 to replace the elusive Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).