Governments fail to prioritise expenditure on essentials

by admin 0

This is according to ONE’s 2014 DATA report titled, ‘Financing Africa’s Future: The Fight Against Poverty’, which stated that governments of both rich and poor countries must urgently address shortfalls to ensure the very poorest people are at the heart of the drive against poverty.

“First and foremost, public spending by African governments should be targeted towards the fight against poverty,” said Sipho Moyo, Africa executive director at the ONE campaign.

“In this regard, spending on agriculture is critically important for unlocking value chains, thus creating decent jobs and viable business opportunities, helping to secure a future for millions through inclusive economic growth.”

(READ MOREAU receives US$18.5 mil for Ebola operations)

Moyo further stated that the need to increase public investments to build resilient health systems that will save lives and help countries prevent crises, such as the Ebola outbreak devastating West Africa, is equally important.


However, the onus is on African countries as well as those abroad with the report also showing that the majority of donors failed to deliver on their financial commitments.

“Important progress has been made – the proportion of people living on less than 1.25 dollars a day has halved in the last 20 years. Yet with a new blueprint for development on the horizon in 2015, leaders risk losing a historic opportunity to end extreme poverty by 2030,” the report said.

“Although some governments deserve praise for stepping up aid efforts – such as the UK, Japan, Germany, and Norway – other countries, including France, Canada, Australia and the Netherlands, showed marked declines.”

The report indicated that, collectively, the European Union fell short on its aid commitments by 52.5 billion dollars in 2013.

It also stated that only one third of life-saving aid goes to least developed countries and that increasing this amount to 50 per cent would see an additional 22 billion dollars reach the most vulnerable people.

(READ MORE: China to extend over $12 bln in aid to Africa)

Sara Harcourt, policy director of research and publications for ONE, and an author of the report, said, “Next year, we want world leaders to agree an ambitious and inspiring set of development goals that deliver for the very poorest.”

“We need an equally ambitious plan to finance them. Both donor and African countries must play an equal part in meeting their commitments and empowering those on the frontlines of poverty,” she added.

According to international campaigning and advocacy organisation, 2015 is an opportunity to deliver for the very poorest and most vulnerable, and to help developing nations transform their economies so that citizens everywhere can lead their lives with dignity.